Is Leon Britton Welsh Premier League’s biggest ever signing?

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Leon Britton’s recent move to Llanelli Town has sent shockwaves in the Welsh domestic scene.

The 36-year-old only eight months ago played top-flight football for Swansea City and even managed the Swans at Anfield.

But now the experienced midfielder will be tasked with yet another survival job as Llanelli hope to stave off the threat of relegation. Britton was part of the Swans side that retained their Football League status on the final day.

During the unveiling of Britton, the Reds manager Andy Hill was asked if this was the biggest signing in the 27-year history of the Welsh Premier League.

He replied: “I’d say yes. Leon is a Premier League footballer. I don’t know any other side that has done that.”

But is the arrival of Britton, the biggest?

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Lee Trundle

The 42-year-old has recently signed for Treflelin Boys & Girls Club, but Trundle could be a big contender against his former Swans teammate for the Welsh Premier League’s biggest signing.

A product of the Welsh Leagues, having played for Rhyl after a spell with Burscough, Chorley, Stalybridge and Southport, Trundle scored an impressive 15 goals in 18 games for the Lilywhites.

This earnt him a move to Football League side Wrexham, before then becoming a Swansea City legend.

Having racked up 78 goals in 146 league appearances for the Swans and very nearly achieving promotion to the Premier League with Bristol City, Trundle joined the now-defunct Neath in 2010, having played in the second tier of English football.

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Trundle ended up playing 59 times for Neath, scoring 26 goals, before joining Preston North End.

He made a return to Welsh football in 2016, when he joined Division Two Llanelli.

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Clayton Blackmore

The Neath-born defender is a Manchester United legend, having spent 12 years at Old Trafford with the Red Devils.

The 54-year-old who made a total of 39 appearances for the Welsh national team, was a United youth academy product. At United, he won a Premier League, an FA Cup and the European Cup Winners Cup.

Having left United in 1994, he had brief spells with Middlesbrough, Bristol City, Barnsley, Notts County and Leigh RMI.

But in 2000, Blackmore moved to Welsh Premier League giants Bangor City where he spent a total of six years, racking up 176 appearances.

He later played for Porthmadog and Neath Athletic. He managed both Bangor City and Porthmadog.

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Alan Tate

36-year-old Alan Tate did the same as Britton. He went from English Premier League to Welsh Premier League, however…

He was sent out on loan to Aberdeen, Crewe Alexandra, Leeds United and Yeovil Town along the way.

The Swansea City legend who made 340 appearances in total for the Jack Army, joined Port Talbot Town in 2015.

Tate was part of the League Cup winning squad in 2013 and won the League One title, as well as playing a part in the Championship play-off final.

His arrival though, unfortunately, wasn’t enough as despite finishing outside of the relegation zone, the Steelmen were relegated to the Welsh League after failing to obtain the required Tier One licence.

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Tate is now studying for his coaching badges with the Football Association of Wales.

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Gary Taylor-Fletcher

A Blackpool legend, given that he scored in the Play-Off final win over Cardiff City at Wembley in 2010. Taylor-Fletcher had a superb six years at Bloomfield Road.

The 36-year-old played for clubs like Northwich Victoria, Leyton Orient, Lincoln City and Huddersfield Town before joining Blackpool.

In 2017, the Widnes born forward joined Bangor City after leaving Accrington Stanley.

Scoring nine goals in 32 appearances, he helped Bangor to a top six finish. Taylor-Fletcher led the Citizens to Europa League play-off triumph when Dean Rittenberg netted against Cardiff Metropolitan at Nantporth in 2017.

He later left and joined Llandudno, but is now back with the Gwynedd club as their permanent First Team manager.

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Matthew Jones

A product of Leeds United’s youth academy, Jones joined the Whites when he was 14 back in 1994. Making 23 senior appearances, Jones later moved on to Leicester City in a £3.5m move.

Jones, unfortunately, had to retire at the young age of just 23, due to a long struggle with back and knee injuries. He made a total of 13 caps for the Welsh national team.

After a three year exile from football, Jones returned to hometown team Llanelli were he enjoyed two years. Jones achieved success with his local club, winning the Reds first ever Welsh Premier League title. He also achieved League Cup final glory and went on to play in a Welsh Cup final and a Champions League qualifier.

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Since then, he worked as a pundit for numerous media companies.

(Featured Image: Matthew Lofthouse)

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