CHRIS LLEWELLYN played his part in Wrexham’s survival mission but the striker accepts responsibility for being part of the Reds’ side that lost their Football League status.

The Wales international’s second spell at The Racecourse in the 2006-07 season turned into a relegation battle but Wrexham avoided relegation to the Conference with a final-day 3-1 success in a winner-takes-all clash with Boston United.

But lessons weren’t learned from that near brush with the drop and struggling Wrexham, again scrapping it out at the wrong end of League Two, weren’t so lucky 12 months later as they failed to secure safety and dropped to the fifth tier.

Llewellyn, who scored the vital second goal to put Wrexham 2-1 ahead in the epic encounter with Boston, hates the fact he failed to help the Reds stay up in the 2007-08 campaign.

“I always look out for my old teams but Wrexham is one of the first I go for because I really enjoyed my time there,” said Llewellyn, who helped Wrexham win the LDV Vans Trophy in 2005 during his first spell at the club.

“I feel somewhat responsible for where the club is now because I was part of the squad that got relegated.

“You have got to take the rough with the smooth. The year before I was part of the club that nearly went down and I received a lot of personal plaudits for helping the club stay up in the last few minutes of the final game.

“If you are going to take those plaudits, when it goes wrong the year after you have got to feel responsible as well.

“I guess a lot of the players feel the same. Relegation sticks with you and it sticks with you for a long time.

“You just hope that the club can get itself together and push on but the longer it seems to go, the harder it seems to get for them to get back up.”

A strong finish to the 2006-07 season gave Wrexham, managed by Brian Carey following the sacking of Denis Smith, a chance of staying up going into the clash with Boston.

Nearly 13,000 fans packed into The Racecourse and saw Boston lead at the break.

The writing was on the wall for Wrexham, who only needed a point to stay up, but Ryan Valentine equalised from the penalty spot early in the second half before Llewellyn struck three minutes from time.

Llewellyn threw his shirt into the crowd in celebration and was wearing a different top - given to him by a supporter - when Michael Proctor’s 90th minute strike secured victory and kept Wrexham in the Football League.

“We had a decent team but weren’t consistent enough and the administration and everything was still hanging over the club,” said Llewellyn.

“Things caught up with us on and off the field.

“We needed a point in that final game and were losing at half-time; you are thinking: ‘this can’t get any worse’.

“It was an eventful second half and an eventful last 10 minutes for me; going on the pitch with one shirt and coming off wearing another - not even my name, number, a different sponsor and too small for me!

“It was a bit surreal.”

But things didn’t get any better for Wrexham, who saw Carey hand the reigns to Brian Little the following season.

The Reds were relegated with four games to go and the club played their final match in the Football League away at Lincoln City on May 3, 2008.

A large away following made the trip to Sincil Bank and Wrexham ended on a high, winning 4-2 with Llewellyn completing the scoring with the Reds’ last ever goal in the league.

“That was a strange game as well,” said Llewellyn. “We had already been relegated but everyone from Wrexham turned up in fancy dress and it was a bit of a party atmosphere even though we’d been relegated.

“Brian Little played a lot of younger players, I was the most experienced player who played.

“We tried to win the game for all those fans who had travelled to support us but the disappointment of relegation is still there.”

Wrexham’s 12th season in non-league has not gone to plan and Dean Keates’ men were battling to avoid relegation before the campaign was suspended because of the coronavirus.

Llewellyn admits it is getting tougher, even for the bigger clubs, to get out of the fifth tier.

“I thought Wrexham would come back up straight away but you look at that league now and there are loads of big clubs,” added Llewellyn.

“Clubs we used to play against in the league; Hartlepool, another of my old clubs, Chesterfield.

“It is tough to get out of it and when you get non-league clubs like Salford who spend money and get in the Football League, you need some cash to get out of the league.”