Iwan Williams on why he has left Bangor 1876 to join Chester FC

Iwan Williams. Picture courtesy of Bangor 1876

Bangor 1876 director of football Iwan Williams is leaving the club to join the management team at Chester FC.

Williams accepted the offer to work alongside the National League North side’s well-known managerial duo of Anthony Johnson and Bernard Morley this weekend.

The 35-year-old Williams recently passed his Pro Licence and feels he needs a new challenge, especially with the prospect of football below tier 1 in Wales returning any time soon looking very remote.

He insists he is not abandoning Bangor 1876 and is still working to ensure plans he has laid down for the club come to fruition.

Anglesey-based Iwan, former manager of Caernarfon Town and Llandudno, spoke to Grassroots North Wales about his decision to become the latest to switch allegiance to the English pyramid.

Grassroots North Wales

Why are you joining Chester and how has the move come about?

Iwan Williams

I’ve known the managers for quite a while and I had a conversation with Anthony a week or so ago.

They are light within their management team at the moment so the opportunity to come in and help was too good to turn down.

From a personal development perspective, they are incredibly demanding and work to the highest standards, so any task I’m given has to be of the highest quality or I’ll be told about it!

I love that though as it drives you to be better and to never rest on your laurels.

Grassroots North Wales

Is the timing right now with little prospect of a return for football in Wales below tier 1?

Iwan Williams

Yes definitely, I’ve been heavily vocal on the current situation within football in Wales.

I just think that clubs below the top tier have been forgotten about, which is fine, but there’s a lack of dialogue.

There’s so many frustrations surrounding the game in Wales at the moment especially at grassroots level which did help push me to make the decision to join Anthony and Bern at Chester, especially given I’ve just passed my Pro Licence, and I’ve always been ambitious, so why have the qualification if you can’t currently use it.

Grassroots North Wales

How difficult a decision has it been to leave Bangor 1876? You had big plans in place – will these continue and is the door open for a return to 1876 at some stage?

Iwan Williams

I haven’t completely left Bangor as I still have tasks to complete and have stressed I won’t just drop tools and go.

We have set up so many great initiatives such as the junior section, development centre, community scheme, Football through Mental Health and the links with the women’s section and local junior teams like Maes Y Bryn.

The foundations have been made for all these so it’s essential to continue in the same vein to especially ensure the children of Bangor get the best possible opportunities within the sport.

Grassroots North Wales

What are your hopes and ambitions on joining Chester?

Iwan Williams

Help the club gain promotion.

There’s a lot of good people at the club and their work ethic deserves success.

From a personal point of view, it’s to continually develop and improve as a coach and as a person and under Anthony and Bern, there’s no doubt I will achieve that.

I’ve always wanted a go at the English system and especially the FA Cup, and given my personal circumstances have settled, I’m based from home with work, and the uncertainty surrounding Welsh football, I believe now is the time to grasp the opportunity and I’m thankful to be given such a great opportunity.

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