The afternoon felt surreal enough with Will Ferrell having a pre-match beer with Wrexham supporters and watching the Welsh club briefly return to the top of the Vanarama National League.
But when the Anchorman star jokingly suggested that the fictional comic book superhero would be happy with his results on the racetrack, this was even the club that has become a real box office hit in recent years. , seems to be off scale.
“Let’s hope Deadpool is happy,” Ferrell told a group of close pals from America to join the Whistlestop Football Tour of England.
He means Ryan Reynolds, co-owner of Wrexham and star of the hugely successful film franchise.
A big fan of the Welcome to Wrexham documentary, Ferrell is familiar with the club anthems adapted by local band Declan Swans.
Just before the final whistle blew, thousands of Welsh voices gathered to chant ‘Deadpool…and Rob McElhennie’ to confirm a 3-1 victory over Wealdstone and it was clearly resonated.
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“I think it’s incredible what’s happening here in Wrexham,” said Ferrell. athletic First visit to the racecourse.
“Ryan and Rob did very well. We made sure they connected with the community and made sure they listened to what the community had to say.”
Ferrell clearly wanted to experience that sense of community for himself. It all started with a lunchtime beer at The Turf.
Today, it truly is the heartbeat of support and, since featured in Series 1 of the documentary, has become a solid part of the tourist route for international supporters who make the pilgrimage to Wrexham.
A tour of the grounds followed, including a brief chat with manager Phil Parkinson and his team in the home dressing room.
“Everyone was so nice,” said Ferrell, wearing a Wrexham tracksuit top sitting in the Aviation American Gin Suite, home to Reynolds and McElhenney, as he was on the racetrack on matchday.
“At The Turf, I’m very enthusiastic. It’s a little overwhelming. I was surrounded, but it was great. But it was kind of weird because you already think you know the pub from the show.
— Jord (@JordGriffXXIX) February 11, 2023
“I also know what this team means to the town and the level of enthusiasm. All I can say is that it definitely lived up to the hype.
“I originally planned this trip two years ago, but I punt due to COVID-19. I texted Ryan and said, “You won’t believe this, but we want to go to Wrexham.” Become.”
As Wrexham chases promotion to the English Football League (the EFL, which is made up of three tiers under the Premier League: Championship, League 1 and League 2), what Hollywood owners are desperate for , Ferrell can speak from experience. He likes football he enjoys success as a club owner.
The 55-year-old was at Bank of California Stadium last November when LAFC, the Los Angeles club in which he holds a minority stake, lifted the MLS Cup for the first time in the most thrilling way.
Trailed 3-2 by the Philadelphia Union in the 124th minute, LA equalized with a Gareth Bale header in one-eighth of the allotted nine minutes of injury time. LA then won 3-0 on penalties to seal a notable double after claiming the Supporters Shield for the best record in the league.
Ferrell reveled in the celebration, drinking water from his famous cup and jokingly pretending to nibble on Bale’s winner’s medal.
More than three months after one of the greatest finals in MLS history, “it still feels very surreal,” he says. “I was on the training ground a few weeks ago talking to managers Steve Cernundro and John Thorrington[co-president and general manager].
“We were all saying, ‘This still doesn’t feel real.’ Such a magical game. We were all literally crying. But here’s the best part. My wife was on the radio I was listening and I was creating a profile with local fans and talking about the game and there was this guy who explained it in such a beautiful way.
“He said, ‘I was sitting with my son and it was the moment Philadelphia went 3-2.’ We’re together, he’s sobbing – and for me, knowing my son was a lifelong fan, it was the most beautiful moment.
“Of course, we came from behind and leveled and won (in the penalty shootout).
Ferrell is the first to admit that his experience with club ownership is very different from the last two years at Wrexham. First, he’s one of about 30 individuals who fund his LAFC.
Nonetheless, Reynolds, who starred in the 2022 Christmas film Spirit with him, reached out to him for advice before joining forces with Philadelphia creator McElhenny to buy the Welsh club. did you come?
“No, he just dropped it in conversation one day,” he replied, smiling at the memory. “He said, ‘We’re trying to buy this team.’ Wow, is it a big kind of consortium?
“But it wasn’t. It was just him and Rob. I don’t have the intimate day-to-day knowledge that I’m supposed to have.
“It’s kind of what LA FC was trying to do. We didn’t just want to be a team, we wanted to be a football club. There’s a difference. learning it.
“LAFC was built from the ground up. We nurture a group of supporters and get them involved in logos, stadium design and everything else. I see them doing the same thing at Wrexham.
“By the time we played our first match[in 2018]’The 3252′ (an independent supporter group named after the capacity of the standing area of BMO Stadium in Los Angeles) was already blowing whistle after whistle. .
“Everybody I invite to a game is like, ‘What’s this place? Are we in Los Angeles? We’ve created a European/South American atmosphere there. ”
Judging by Reynolds’ level of excitement in the recent FA Cup fourth round match against Sheffield United at home to Wrexham, Ferrell’s words proved prescient. Reynolds and McElhenney tuned live from the US again on Saturday, as they did the weekend before the league game at Altrincham.
The match was less dramatic than the last two cup matches against United who are seeking promotion from the Championship to the Premier League. Shortly after, Weldstone’s Tallinn’s Alarahia nudged Paul his Marin’s first goal to equalize at 1-1, even at half-time.
Wrexham regained the advantage within four minutes with a low drive from Jacob Mendy. Ferrell and his friends are now fully invested, with the movie star waving a fictional red card over his head after a foul by Wealdstone forward Corey Andrews.
Referee Elliott Swallow deemed the attack worthy of a reservation only, but the visitors were eventually reduced to ten. Max Kretzmer was shown his second yellow after being treated without permission and returning to the field.
Sam Dalby used the hosts’ numerical advantage to make it 3-1 in the second half, prompting a round of high fives among the visiting delegation from the United States.
For Ferrell, the only happy ending to a fun trip was a live match at Wrexham, the final match of last season’s FA Trophy, which he lost to Bromley at Wembley.
“We’ve been on some of these trips now,” the actor says.
“But for college football. Normally, I would pick a USC[University of Southern California]game where I went to school.
“Now here in Wrexham we can see how they have invested in what it takes to run the club. In contrast to the front sign, to have a presence.
“It doesn’t surprise me, because that’s how Ryan does it. Getting to know him, he’s very thorough. Ryan loves solving puzzles.”