BEN TOZER lost his place in the side to Eoghan O'Connell but the outgoing club captain has no complaints and says his replacement was "phenomenal" during the run-in when Wrexham went onto clinch promotion.

Tozer arrived at The Racecourse from Cheltenham Town for an undisclosed fee in August 2021 and he made 118 league appearances in three-seasons with the Reds but the 34-year-old has been released by manager Phil Parkinson.

Although he helped put Wrexham in contention for a top-three finish in League Two this term, the 1-0 defeat at home to Bradford City on February 10 proved to be Tozer's last start for the club as O'Connell lined up as the middle centre-back for the final 17 league matches.

O'Connell produced a series of brilliant performances as Parkinson's men clinched runners-up spot behind champions Stockport County to make it back-to-back promotions for the first time in the club's history.

Tozer, restricted to three substitutes appearances after coming out of the team, could not speak highly enough of O'Connell.

"Eoghan was superb. I couldn't have lost my place to a better player or person," said Tozer, who played every minute of every game when Wrexham clinched the National League title following a record-breaking 2022-23 campaign.

"The performances he was turning out were phenomenal and you have got to take your hat off to him.

"I am not a bitter person. There is no point sitting there thinking 'that should be me' or 'that could be me'.

"If I am being honest with you, Eoghan played better than I was.

"You give credit where it is due and he was outstanding."

Wrexham enjoyed another successful season but Tozer had to deal with personal pain following his father's sudden passing.

In July, Keith, having been admitted to hospital, was diagnosed with leukaemia but sadly died a few days later and when he shared the news on social media, the defender stressed the importance of getting things checked with the caption 'don't leave it too late'.

Tozer says losing his dad has had a huge impact on him.

"The knock-on effect on what happened last summer with my old-man.....when the gaffer said to me there is nothing here for me next season, I wasn't trying to change his mind or anything but I just feel like I needed the summer to reset my mind and my body," said Tozer.

"Kind of go again and I think I will bring a better version of myself next season.

"If I am being honest, at some stages of this season I felt like I was kind of suffocating myself and fighting it.

"I turned around to my wife a couple of times and said 'I feel like I have done that wrong' and she said 'you are just being you, you are doing what you feel is right at the time so don't question yourself'."

Tozer's time in north Wales has come to an end but he leaves as a Wrexham supporter for life.

"The club is only going one way," he added.

"Me, my family and even my mates, I think they will all be Wrexham fans for life.

"It will be nice to go back there one day and stand on the terraces and cheer on the team with the fans.

"It will be tough next season in League One but I still think there's a positive season to be had there."