Conwy Borough move was right challenge says Tangerines boss Gareth Thomas
Conwy Borough boss Gareth Thomas who has led the club to the Welsh Alliance League title, says his decision to join the club in the summer proved to be the right one.
Borough returned to the Huws Gray Alliance after just one season away from the second tier, after being relegated last season, with Thomas being the mastermind behind the immediate return.
Thomas replaced former manager Brian Pritchard who left his role at the end of last season, after initially replacing Will Ryder.
“I was questioned when I took the role on with the club getting relegated but I’ve never been afraid to drop down leagues prior to this and it felt the right move with a challenge which would allow players the opportunity to play at a great club and hopefully a platform to progress through the league.
The club have earned an early promotion, after initially setting a two year of target of promotion with the former Denbigh Town manager.
“It was massive we gained promotion at the first attempt. When I sat with the directors last summer prior to taking the job it was a two-year project to get promoted but I felt with us getting a young squad together it was vital we went up at the first attempt as most of these lads deserve the chance to play higher.”
Conwy Borough were considered one of the bigger teams in the league, having been one of the applicants to apply for promotion to the Welsh Premier League last season. However Conwy Borough saw off the challenge of Llangefni Town, as they piped them to the title with a three point gap
“We concentrated on ourselves and I’m proud of what has been achieved and the manner in which the staff and squad went about our business.”
With the second best defence in the league, as well as scoring an impressive 107 goals, the footprint that Gareth Thomas has laid out for his players has seen it pay off. Emphasis on the promotion has been on how the club conducted themselves through pre-season.
Signings such as Corrig McGonigle who has netted an impressive 43 times this season, has carried his impressive league form on from last season where he won the Welsh Alliance League title with Glantraeth.
“Togetherness was massive we held a player presentation prior to the season to outline our plans. As the season approached we had a squad we believed in and they have been first class buying into everything as a squad, said Thomas.
“It’s been a long campaign but as a club that was always the main goal and to clinch the title with a game to go is testament to the staff and the squad at the club.”
The League win is part of a treble winning season for the Tangerines, having won the Cookson Cup and joining an illustrious club of FAW Trophy winners. The treble has put them in good stead ahead of their return to the Cymru Alliance next season.
“It’s beyond our dreams in the same meeting i asked whether they where happy for me to just concentrate on the league but as you start winning a few games early on you then have to look at every game as it came. The FAW trophy became a target once we got the Quarter Final stage.”
The opening day win over Llanberis where they claimed an 8-0 victory over their opponents has been identified as one of the performances which stood out for the club in their promotion push. How fitting in that they claimed the League title after beating Llanberis at their Y Morfa ground by five goals to one.
“The standout for me where the opening game at Llanberis where we where superb, obviously the semi final and final of the trophy whilst we where outstanding midweek at Greenfield when the pressure was all on us.”
To finish off on such a season, manager Gareth Thomas was awarded with the Manager of the Month award for April, topping off what has been a memorable season for the club.
(Featured Image: Aled Wyn Jones)