WREXHAM'S new chairman Mark Guterman last night insisted he would not need to win over fans of the Third Division club following his reign at fierce local rivals Chester City.
The Cheshire-based businessman was officially unveiled as the Red Dragons' new owner yesterday after buying out club chairman and majority shareholder Pryce Griffiths.
And the 41-year-old property developer, whose spell as chairman of neighbours Chester ended under a cloud when he took the Blues into administration, said he was confident of receiving a warm reception from Wrexham supporters.
"I know there is a lot of rivalry between the supporters, but I was not born a Chester fan," said Guterman. "I am a Manchester United fan. Wrexham is my club now.
"So far, everyone I have spoken to has been very friendly. I hope people see that if it was not for me, Wrexham would be in administration by now.
"And the fans will hopefully appreciate the fact I have already been paying players wages and I have underwritten the signings of (striker) Lee Jones and (goalkeeper) Andy Dibble."
Guterman`s spell as chairman of Chester started well when the club, then managed by former Wales captain Kevin Ratcliffe, reached the Third Division play-off semi-finals (against Swansea City) in 1996-97.
But a year later Guterman sparked controversy when he placed City into administration before selling the club to American businessman Terry Smith. With Smith at the helm, Chester were relegated from the Football League in 2000.
"I admit that I made mistakes at Chester," said Guterman. "But I didn't do anything wrong; I didn't get them relegated.
"I did what I felt was in the best interests of the football club and I lost a lot of money.
"I've learned from my mistakes and I want to move forward with Wrexham."
Guterman, who had been in negotiations for three months to buy out 77-year-old Griffiths, would not reveal the extent of his financial backing, but said his main aim was to ensure stability at The Racecourse.
"It is always scary getting involved with a football club," he said. "But I simply love the game and I believe Wrexham has a lot of potential.
"I want to stabilise the club in what is a very uncertain world at the moment with the collapse of ITV Digital and so on. But there is a new television deal in the pipeline.
"On the pitch, I want to get the club back into the Second Division and (manager) Denis Smith and (vice-chairman) David Rhodes are very important to us achieving that.
"I am not worried that two teams will be relegated to the Nationwide Conference because I don't believe Wrexham will be down there.
"Confident is perhaps not the word. But looking at how well we played at the end of last season, I am hopeful that we will be pushing to get out of Division Three."
Griffiths decided to sell his majority shareholding after admitting the stress had become too much.