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Rugby League: Reasons to be cheerful about the Crusaders [Dec. 17th, 2009|02:10 pm]
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I tried really hard this week to find reasons to be cheerful about Crusaders' prospects at Wrexham this coming season.

So here goes.......

There's a lot of genuine enthusiasm from the football club. The ground is perfectly fine, it's nice and close to the station and there's a classic thatched pub in the opposite direction.

And, er, that's it.

I'd love to be proved wrong, but I see no way in the world that the club can be competitive in 2010. They only have half of last season's wooden-spoon winning squad and even Brian Noble, with all his knowledge and contacts, is finding it fiendishly difficult to sign anyone else. The good Welsh kids we saw in the European Cup will have a role to play, but they will be in this weird 150 mile limbo between North and South Wales.

The Wrexham public won't turn up to watch their own football club - gates are usually below 2000 - so what price a losing Super League club in a town with no real rugby tradition?

They are, of course, relying on a healthy influx of visiting fans, but that is always a dodgy hook to hang your hat on. Sure, there's places to go nearby - LLangollen, for instance - but it's hardly a weekend in the South of France.

So, good luck to them - they are going to need it if they are to survive, let alone thrive.