THERE have been lots of ups and downs since Wrexham’s last League One fixture but the 2024-25 season can’t come quick enough for supporters who are relishing being back in the third tier.

Relegation had already been confirmed when Denis Smith’s side faced Huddersfield Town at The Racecourse on May 7, 2005.

Wrexham were the first club to suffer a ten-point deduction for being placed in administration the previous December and the Reds never recovered after slipping from mid-table into the drop zone.

Only pride was at stake on the final day of the 2004-05 campaign and Wrexham suffered a 1-0 defeat against Huddersfield with David Mirfin scoring the only goal just before the break in front of more than 7,100 supporters at the iconic north Wales stadium.

Despite the club’s financial troubles and battle for survival off the pitch, Wrexham beat Southend United 2-0 in the LDV Vans Trophy final at The Millennium Stadium in Cardiff just a month earlier and Smith named a strong side for the last game in League One versus the Terriers who just missed out on a play-off spot.

Goalkeeper Ben Foster, who was on loan from Stoke City, played his last league game for the Reds before securing a big-money move to Manchester United that summer.

Former England international Foster enjoyed a successful career before coming out of retirement to return to The Racecourse and help Wrexham clinch the National League title in 2022-23.

With Smith going with a 5-3-2 formation that current Reds’ boss Phil Parkinson also favours, Dennis Lawrence, Shaun Pejic and Craig Morgan were the centre-backs with Carlos Edwards and Andy Holt operating as wing-backs.

It also proved to be Morgan and Edwards’ last league match in Wrexham’s colours, with the duo bound for MK Dons and Luton Town respectively.

Captain Darren Ferguson, Danny Williams and Matty Crowell started in midfield for Wrexham with Juan Ugarte and Chris Llewellyn leading the attack.

Prolific striker Ugarte also said his farewells that summer with the Spaniard joining Crewe Alexandra, but injury meant he never recaptured his 2004-05 form for Crewe or when he returned to Wrexham for brief spells in later seasons.

Llewellyn will be remembered as the player that scored Wrexham’s last goal in the Football League in the 4-2 League Two win at Lincoln City in May 2008 before the 15-year non-league nightmare.

Mark Jones and Hector Sam appeared as substitutes against Huddersfield.

It also turned out to be Sam’s last league outing for Wrexham before making the move to Port Vale.

That final season in League One did kick off on a high with 5,099 watching the Reds beat Swindon Town 2-1 at The Racecourse.

Chris Armstrong came off the bench to score the second goal from the spot after Lawrence had headed Wrexham in front, with Swindon reducing the deficit in added time.

Lawrence was one of five players who also started the final game with the others being Holt, Ferguson, Williams and Llewellyn.

There were more lows than highs for Wrexham supporters in the seasons that followed but the club is on the up since Hollywood stars Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney became co-chairmen in February 2021.

Parkinson has led Wrexham to back-to-back promotions for the first time in the club’s history and 19 years on from that last League One fixture against Huddersfield, the teams will meet again next season.

The Reds fell on hard terms but are now enjoying an amazing journey under the multi-millionaire actors while the Terriers have also enjoyed the good times as well as the bad since the last league game between the clubs.

Huddersfield spent two seasons in the Premier League from 2017 to 2019 but were relegated from the Championship last season and will line-up in League One for the first time since the 2011-12 campaign.