No grounds for concern for Wrexham AFC manager Dean Keates


Richard Williams

IT’S still early days but Dean Keates is delighted that Wrexham’s new training site is beginning to take shape.

Wrexham are setting up a training base at The Nine Acre site in the town after coming to an agreement with the council, and work is well underway.

The training pitches have been marked out, sanded and reseeded, and Keates is pleased with the progress that has been made in such a short space of time.

“We were fortunate enough that the council let us have the keys a little bit earlier than scheduled so we are ahead of plans,” said Keates.

“The lads have done unbelievable work down there. They have got the grass down as short as it can be.

“I think it had something like 10 cuts in the first week so we got it down as low as we could before everything else went into it like the sand and the seed.

“We had the contractors in over the weekend and the first amount of sand and seed has gone into the pitches.”

After leaving Colliers Park,  which is owned by Glyndwr University, Wrexham began last season using Lex’s Stansty Park but finished the 2016-17 campaign back at the  Gresford-based Colliers’ site.

A permanent return to Colliers Park was ruled out and Keates jumped at the chance of moving to Nine Acre, meaning the club has it’s own training site going into Wrexham’s 10th season in non-league.

“I am more than happy,” said Keates. “Colliers Park went a long time ago. It wasn’t ours and we were dictated to by when we could train there.

“Down at Lex, there were too many teams there and only two pitches so that was never going to be able to accommodate us.

“Nine Acres popped up and I encouraged director Spencer Harris and said I thought that was the right place for us.

“So far, everything has gone to plan. The council accommodated us and there is a fair amount of work and money gone into it already.

“All being well it will be perfect and ready for pre-season.”

Keates is revamping his squad ahead of the 2017-18 campaign and has already brought in defender James Hurst from Dover Athletic.

Offers have been made to a number of targets and Keates is hoping to find out this week if they are keen on a move to The Racecourse.

But Keates has warned that players risk losing deals that are on the table if they take too long to give him an answer with the Reds boss looking at alternative new signings.

“They’ve said they will get back to me but they understand that we could end up going elsewhere,” said Keates.

“If they are dragging their feet and seeing what their options are, we are also looking at what other options we have got as well.

“If one player comes back and says he will take it, the other player misses out.”

Keates, who has Chris Dunn, Mark Carrington, Leo Smith, Paul Rutherford and Hurst under contract, won’t be messed around by targets.

“Three of the offers were for two positions so it was basically whoever came back to me,” said Keates. “I would be happy to have any two or the three.

“Players understand the situation, they are looking at what their best options are but us as a football club, we are looking at what other options we have got as well.”

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