WELSH PREMIER FOOTBALL

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IT is nearly two years since Andy Preece and Andy Morrison arrived at the Hollingsworth Group Stadium to take charge of Airbus UK Broughton.

And the management duo have transformed the fortunes of the Wingmakers, leading them into Europe for the first time last season and currently sitting in second place with an 11-point breathing space over the chasing pack. 

Former Football League defender Morrison, whose career included spells at Plymouth, Blackpool, Huddersfield and Manchester City, believes the Welsh Premier has a great deal to offer.

"Outside of full-time football there's no league better than the Welsh Premier League for competitiveness, intensity and passion," he says.

"The 12-club structure has its benefits in that you're never that far away from playing a club. 

"You might play somebody in August in the non-league scene in England and then not see them again until March, so anything that's happened in that first game just drifts away.

"But in this league you know you've got your set group in the second half of the season, so the intensity and passion in every game seems to be huge, the desire to win is great.

"In the English system you may play a team and you won't see them again for 12 years because of four-up and four-down, so every game in the WPL seems to be so competitive.

"You get fantastic games with great history from decades of rivalry between clubs.

"You've got teams like Afan Lido now who are beating teams, there's no other league like that, teams just get cast adrift and that, for me, is down to good managers and coaches who prepare their teams.

"Every game is a tough game, there's no easy games in this league."

Over the past few months, Preece and Morrison have been linked with several vacancies back in England, but Morrison says: "It would have to be a full-time club if we decided to move because there is no other mainly part-time league in British football which offers the reward and carrot of Europe.

"Everybody's pushing for that and there's pressures that come with it.

"You're working within a window which prepares you for everything that you would come across in full-time football.

I love the intensity, I love the passion, it's just a great league to be in.

"I love the intensity, I love the passion, it's just a great league to be in."

After inheriting a squad in January 2012, Preece and Morrison turned to players from the English non-league scene for their first full season in charge.

"It appears at the moment that clubs in the south have a choice of players whereas, up here, there are so many clubs that the players have more choice," Morrison says.

"With the demise of Neath and Llanelli there's nothing to compete with Carmarthen and Port Talbot in the south, so they seem to have the pick of the players and good luck to them, they've got great squads down there.

"We have to try and entice players in and that gives us the opportunity to pick up players from the English pyramid who we feel could do a job at this level."

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21 July 2017

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