Login Register

Pryce: Why I'm quitting the Dragons

OUTGOING Wrexham chief Pryce Griffiths last night broke his silence at last on why he is ending his 16-year spell as Dragons chairman.

OUTGOING Wrexham chief Pryce Griffiths last night broke his silence at last on why he is ending his 16-year spell as Dragons chairman.

And he admitted: "It's time to go. I can't take the stress any more."

Griffiths, 77, is expected to sell up his controlling interest in the relegated club to Manchester-based property developer Mark Guterman in the next month.

Griffiths says he has had enough of being in charge, that Guterman is the right man to take Wrexham forward and that Denis Smith is the right manager to bring them straight back up again next season.

"I'm getting piles and piles of people urging me to hang on in there and carry on as chairman," Griffiths told Wales on Sunday.

"I find that very flattering, but I'm sticking by my decision.

"I have been saying for a few years that it is time for me to get out and I feel I must make the move this time."

Griffiths went on: "I'm not pretending it is going to be easy for me. On the contrary, it is a huge decision.

"But I have been at Wrexham for 28 years and for 16 years of that time I have been chairman.

"I'm the longest-serving chairman in Wrexham's history - and probably currently in the entire Football League too. I've had a good run."

Griffiths has had to deal with the pressure of combining a successful club - and, by and large, Wrexham have been that - with carefully monitoring the purse strings just to keep the Dragons afloat.

Despite working to a limited budget, Wrexham stabilised themselves in Division Two, introduced a brilliant academy, redeveloped The Racecourse and bought a new training HQ.

Three times they came within a whisker of the Division Two play-offs.

But last week, Wrexham were relegated back into the Nationwide League's basement division.

Griffiths said: "Obviously I'm really disappoint -ed about that.

"There are a number of reasons why it has happened: we've not had the gates I hoped we would have, which doesn't help the financial situation; lots of people are blaming Brian Flynn and we've not had money to reinforce the team.

"But what I will say is that I believe our manager Denis Smith is tremendous and he's definitely the right man to have in charge.

"If anyone can get Wrexham up next season, Denis is the man."

Griffiths has been involved in protracted negotiations with Guterman about the takeover.

Gutterman, in fact, has already pledged a six-figure sum to the Dragons by helping to pay the wages for the past two months.

Griffiths says he does not know what Guterman's plans for the club are, but admitted a major cash injection was needed.

"Every team who goes down says they plan to come straight back up, but most don't," said Griffiths.

"I would like to think Wrexham can, but clear-ly money is needed.

"One advantage is that if we're doing well near the top, we will actually get better gates than we do at the higher level in Division Two.

"Whatever, I expect to only be on the periphery. I will remain at the club, but my time as chairman has come to an end - definitely."


David Holmes
Chief News Reporter
David Norbury
Mike Fuller
Contact Us
Full contact details