Wales

Former Wrexham FC player Ashley Ward launches club bid

Wrexham FC's Racecourse ground
Image caption Ashley Ward's bid would rival hotelier Stephanie Booth's fan-based consortium

Former footballer Ashley Ward, who started his career at Wrexham FC, says he now wants to buy the club.

In a statement on the Wrexham FC website, the player said he had held "positive preliminary talks" about a takeover at the Racecourse ground.

Stephanie Booth, leading a community club consortium, told BBC Wales she had been emailed by the owners to say they had now decided to go with Mr Ward.

Wrexham FC has been asked for comment.

Hotel owner Ms Booth was unveiled at the ground last Saturday as heading the preferred bid.

However, Mr Ward states on the club's website that: "I have also had it confirmed to me, by the current owners, that none of the other interested parties have a preferred bidder status."

He said his legal representatives were now examining the club's financial status as part of a bidding process.

"I anticipate being in a position to make a formal announcement shortly," he said.

The former striker, 40, whose clubs include Blackburn Rovers, Derby County and Norwich City, said he had also held talks with the Wrexham Supporters Trust and the local council.

"We believe that each of these parties are instrumental to the future success of the club," he added.

"It is also important that the ownership of the stadium remains in the hands of the club."

Mr Ward made his first League appearance for Wrexham while on loan from his first club, Manchester City.

He said: "I made my league debut at Wrexham and they helped me get my football career started.

"I have always had a soft spot for the club and hope that I will be able to help restore Wrexham to its rightful position, not only in the Football League, but in time back into the Championship."

Earlier in the week, the Wrexham Supporters Trust said it would be willing to join the £5m bid being put forward by Ms Booth.

Club owners Geoff Moss and Ian Roberts have already gone on the record stating that they would prefer the team to go to a fan-based buyout.

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