MICKEY THOMAS has pulled no punches in delivering his pre-season pep-talk to Wrexham Football Club.

Wrexham legend Thomas, who is winning his battle against cancer after fighting the killer disease for most of 2019, desperately wants this to be the season, the team that first gave him his chance in football, finally get promotion back to the Football League.

“It will be 12 seasons in non-league football and that’s not good enough,” said Thomas, who will celebrate his 65th birthday next month.

“And you know the best way to cope with not suffering hard-luck stories year on year in the play-offs, then it’s to finish first. Win automatic promotion. Go for it from day one and go out to attack and boss this league from the first whistle of the first match.”

The fixtures for the new season are out next week and with the Reds kicking off their pre-season games tomorrow, optimism will once again start to grow among the success-starved Wrexham supporters.

Thomas, who celebrated two promotions during his time at Wrexham in 1978 and then again in 1993 under Brian Flynn, says it’s time the team delivered the goods again.

“It’s a make-or-break season as far as some of the fans will be concerned,” said Thomas, who made more than 300 appearances for the Reds.

“I’ve said this before that the Wrexham supporters are incredible. They keep coming back year after year, desperate to see their team back in the league.

“And the club needs to repay that faith by doing all they can to make sure Wrexham make a serious attempt to go up this season.

“I’m not talking about the play-offs. Why put yourself through all that again? Go for top spot. There’s no better way of winning promotion than finishing as champions.”

Former Wales international Thomas speaks from experience having been a key player in Wrexham’s best team ever - Arfon Griffiths’ Third Division title winners in the 1977/78 season that also saw the Reds reach the FA Cup and League Cup quarter-finals.

“I don’t like harping on about the past but we were good enough to be champions,” added Thomas, who left the club in 1979 in a £350,000 move to Manchester United.

“Yes we had a great side, brilliant players but we worked hard for our rewards and the current Wrexham management team and players must think the same.”

But to do that, Thomas insists that Wrexham must change their tactics.

“We don’t score enough and we have strikers who don’t even get 10 goals a season,” said Thomas.

“The tally of 58 goals from 46 games is poor. Football’s an entertainment business and the fans want to see attacking teams that score goals and they’re not really bothered about how many clean sheets you keep.

“Bryan Hughes needs to change that philosophy this season. He needs to try something different from what’s gone on before.

“It’s not rocket science to work out that Wrexham don’t score enough goals and you’d like to see a more positive style of play. Because, at times, it has been boring.”

Hughes, who was Wrexham’s third manager of the season last term, has promised to deliver entertaining football at The Racecourse.

He’s backed that up by signing attack-minded players in JJ Hooper, Devonte Redmond, Leighton McIntosh and Cardiff City loanee, Mark Harris.

“The fans want crowd-pleasers but they also want a striker who scores 20 goals-a-season,” added Thomas, who starts a nine-week chemotherapy session next month as part of his cancer treatment.

“We’ve got a great leader in captain Shaun Pearson. The fans love him and his whole-hearted approach but they love a striker who scores game in, game out even more.

“They also want to see midfielders score too - just like we did in the ‘78 side.

“And Wrexham are going to need one in what will be a difficult league to get out of this year.

“Chesterfield, Notts County, Hartlepool and Fylde will be strong. But, as I said, Wrexham must think big and go for top spot and finish champions.”