In an exclusive interview with Dafabet WPL’s Jamie Thomas, Wilde spoke of his strong desire to write history for a new club, as well as emphasising his genuine belief that The Nomads have key building blocks in place to mount a serious challenge for the league title in the season to come:
‘We’re really looking forward to the (Dafabet) Welsh Premier League starting now, hopefully getting off to a good start and creating history for the club too, because that was my ambition when I came here to write chapters for another team – there was nothing left to achieve at TNS, I want to do the same for another club now.
‘I wouldn’t have signed for (GAP) Connah’s Quay if I didn’t genuinely believe they could push TNS or Bala for the (Dafabet) Welsh Premier League title. I want to be achieving the ultimate and I absolutely believe this football club can deliver that.
‘We know what’s in store, we know the quality of TNS and Bala, but other clubs have strengthened too so it will be an interesting season – we have the right personnel, the right manager who gets the best out of his players psychologically and I’m thoroughly looking forward to the season ahead and challenging for that top-spot.’
The location, the vision and ambition of the set-up at the club was crucial in securing the former Fleetwood Town, Chester and TNS striker’s signature:
‘I’m excited about the new project that is going to ahead at the club; the ambition around the club, the manager sold his vision to me and I knew I wanted to be a part of this club going forward from quite early on – as soon as I was contacted by them, to be honest!
‘I was always ready for the transition from TNS to a part-time situation, something I’d been gearing myself up for over the last few years – the location is ideal for me too, being from The Wirral, everything was just perfect.’
The most important factor behind the move though, appeared to be the incredible journey the club has been on since former Manchester City captain Andy Morrison took over as manager in November, leading the club from the bottom half of the table to where they find themselves now:
‘Most importantly, I chose this club because I know the direction it wants to go in – a very positive direction – with Andy spearheading it, and it only goes to show his impact when you look at what has happened with (GAP) Connah’s Quay since he took over.
‘From the bottom of the league, to winning European ties, it is a fantastic story and I was very keen to be a part of what that story looks like going forward in the next 12-18 months – it was a no-brainer for me to come here after hearing Andy’s enthusiasm and his vision for the future. I still have challenges, goals I want to accomplish and this club is the perfect place for me to do that.’
The Birkenhead-born forward, however, is very much looking forward to being on the other side of that now and running his former club right down to the wire in the chase for the title this coming season:
‘It’ll be great to be part of the so-called chasing pack now, if that’s the right term for it – we’re the underdogs so it’s good for me to flip the coin and have that experience. It’s what I’ve always wanted and it really excites me, especially with the players we’ve got at our disposal.
‘Whether I’ve played for Fleetwood, Chester or TNS, I’ve tried to adapt my style of play. TNS played through the thirds, whereas this side adapt their style quite a bit and I’m looking forward to being a part of that.’
A focal part of that style last season was the spine of the team in the form of Les Davies, Callum Morris and Club Captain George Horan.
In the Second Leg of their Europa League Second Round Qualifier against FK Vojvodina, everyone got a glimpse into what a Les Davies-Mike Wilde partnership up front might look like, as the two combined for the final quarter of the game and caused the Serbian side no end of problems.
Wilde admitted he was eager to see how that partnership develops, whilst also pointing to other areas of the squad that impressed him and how long it might take to see the side click together:
‘Myself and Les up front looks quite exciting, but it is one thing to look good on paper and another entirely to do it on the pitch – hopefully that last 20 minutes against Vojvodina offered an insight into what could possibly done with us two up front.
‘It goes further than that though, obviously, as the guys behind like Callum Morris, Wes Baynes, Nathan Woolfe, Jay Owen, Ashley Ruane and so on, they’re all quality attacking players and the squad is full of guys like that.
‘There are things that will need work elsewhere on the pitch too – and they’re not going to be things that click in August or September, we’re going to have to be persistent and carry on trying to make the best of what we’ve got.’
Looking back on those particular results now, Wilde pinpointed the club’s mentality for the reason behind those impressive results, citing the psychology of the team something that could potentially help in future fixtures against the reigning champions:
‘One of the reasons I picked (GAP) Connah’s Quay was because they sold me the story of the club, as well as the mentality they’ve got and I think that showed in those two games against TNS last season.
‘The club has a psychological edge, or maybe if it isn’t an edge then it’s an ability that this club has to level the playing field somewhat against TNS.
‘There’s no doubting their ability, but sometimes it isn’t all about the ability – it is about your application and your mind-set, and this club is perfect in that regard so if we keep that up this season hopefully we can get a few more positive results against TNS this season.’
Wedi’r profiad o gystadlu yn Ail Rownd Ragbrofol Cynghrair Ewropa gyda Gap Cei Connah yr haf hwn, mae cyn-flaenwr Y Seintiau Newydd Mike Wilde yn mynnu bod dyfodol disglair iawn i’w glwb newydd wrth iddynt geisio herio ei gyn-gyflogwyr am goron Uwch Gynghrair Cymru Dafabet y tymor hwn.
Mewn cyfweliad arbennig gyda gohebydd yr Uwch Gynghrair, Jamie Thomas, siaradodd Wilde am ei awydd cryf i greu pennod newydd o hanes i’r Nomadiaid:
'Rydym yn edrych ymlaen i’r tymor newydd ddechrau ‘nawr, gan obeithio y cawn ni ddechrau da. Y gobaith yw creu hanes ar gyfer y clwb y tymor yma, oherwydd dyna oedd fy’n uchelgais pan ddes i yma. Nid oedd gennyf unrhywbeth ar ôl i’w gyflawni gyda’r Seintiau, ac felly y gobaith yw ail-adrodd y llwyddiant hwnnw gyda Gap Cei Connah.
'Fyddwn i ddim wedi symud yma os nad oeddwn yn wirioneddol gredu y gallwn ni herio’r Seintiau a’r Bala am y teitl. ‘Rwyf yn credu bod y gallu gennym i ennill y Bencampwriaeth a dyna’n gobaith ni gyd yn y clwb yma.
Mae’r bobl iawn gennym ar y cae ac oddi arno hefyd i gynnig her gwirioneddol i’r clybiau eraill ond fydd hi ddim yn hawdd o gwbl wrth gwrs gan bo’r Seintiau a’r Bala yn enwedig yn dimau o safon, ac mae’n bwysig cofio bod clybiau eraill wedi cryfhau hefyd. Mae hwn am fod yn dymor diddorol iawn.
Er iddo dderbyn nifer o gynigion o ddwy ochr y ffin, dywedodd 'Wildey' mai uchelgais Gap Cei Connah oedd y prif symbyliad iddo symud yno:
'Rwy'n teimlo'n gyffrous am ddyfodol y clwb yma; yr uchelgais o gwmpas y lle a gwerthoedd a gweledigaeth y rheolwr. ‘Roedd y penderfyniad i symud yma’n eitha sydyn a hawdd i ddweud y gwir.
‘Does dim amheuaeth bod dylanwad a llwyddiant Andy Morrison yn y clwb ers iddo gymryd yr awennau yn ffactor pwysig arall wnaeth fy mhenderfyniad yn eithaf hawdd.
Mae Andy wedi cynnig targedau a heriau newydd i mi ac felly ‘rwy’n credo mai Cei Connah yw’r lle perffaith i mi ar yr adeg penodol yma o fy ngyrfa.
Mae Wilde – enillodd y trebl gyda’r Seintiau Newydd y tymor diwethaf wrth gwrs – yn edrych ymlaen at ddatblygu ei berthynas gyda’i gyd-chwaraewyr newydd – yn enwedig felly Les Davies yn y llinell flaen:
'Hyd yma – mae’r bartneriaeth rhwng Les a fi yn edrych yn eithaf cyffrous. Gobeithio bod y 20 munud olaf yn erbyn Vojvodina wedi cynnig cipolwg o be allwn ni ei gynnig fel partneriaeth.
'Mae'n mynd ymhellach na hynny, fodd bynnag, yn amlwg, gan fod hogia’ fel Callum Morris, Wes Baynes, Nathan Woolfe, Jay Owen, Ashley Ruane a nifer o chwaraewyr eraill yn ymosod yn reddfol. Mae gennym garfan gyffrous ar gyfer y tymor newydd.
Felly beth yw’r gobeithion gwirioneddol y tymor hwn.? A fydd hi’n bosib i Gap Cei Connah – oedd ar waelod y Cynghrair pan ddaeth Andy Morrison i’r clwb, gynnig her go iawn i’r Seintiau Newydd. Mae Wilde yn dawel hyderus:
'Does dim amau eu gallu nhw (YSN) ond weithiau mae angen mwy na dim ond dawn. Mae angen cryfder corfforol a meddyliol ac mae gennym ddigon o hynny yn y clwb hwn.
‘Rydym yn gobeithio’n fawr y cawn ganlyniadau cadarnhaol yn erbyn Y Seintiau’r tymor hwn – ac ymgyrch gofiadwy a hanesyddol hyd yn oed!
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