Airbus UK Broughton are pleased to announce the return of Former Airbus Player/Manager Gareth Owen, Owen returns to the Airfield in the position of Head Coach recently vacated by Darren Ryan`s return to Newtown.
Owen has agreed to return to work alongside Director of Football Craig Harrison and the appointment confirms that the Wingmakers now once again fully meet the criteria for Domestic and UEFA Licensing for the forthcoming season.
Owen began his career at Wrexham FC and spent the best part of 12 years at the Racecourse before moving on to Doncaster Rovers before moving to the Welsh Premier League with a spell at Connahs Quay Nomads before joining Airbus where he became Player Manager in 2005, Owen was able to keep the Wingmakers in the Welsh Premier League during his tenure and there was shock of his departure in 2008 to return to a playing role only at Rhyl FC, his move back to playing was vindicated when he won the Welsh Premier League Player of the Season and in addition has a Welsh Premier League Champions Medal and European Experience. Since then Rhyl have dropped down a division into the Huws Grays Alliance after failing to gain the coveted Domestic Licence and under Greg Strong Owen has combined playing with Coaching in Tier Two.
Owen is now regarded as one of the Top Coaches in Wales and his work with the Welsh Trust and as a Football Development Officer along with his extensive experience and knowledge as a Professional Footballer both inside and outside of Wales coupled with his previous working relationship with Craig Harrison meant the Owen was the stand out candidate to return to assist in moving the Wingmakers closer to their aims of top 6 and ultimately European Football.
Airbus Chairman Paul McKinlay spoke about the return of Owen “ We are delighted that Gareth has agreed to return to the Club as Head Coach, he brings a wealth of Invaluable Coaching Knowledge and experience with him, and of course his ability and experience as a player will be there to be called upon too, Gareth will complement Craig`s approach to achieving our goals of Top 6 Football all whilst now having sufficient Licensing criteria elements in place”
Owen was delighted to confirm his arrival at the Airfield “I'm really pleased to confirm my return to Airbus. Obviously being player/manager previously I already have the club at heart. I've enjoyed three years at Rhyl and now look forward to the challenge of working in the WPL again with a club that's challenging for Europe. I had a great working relationship with the club and Craig previously and aim to build on that. It was difficult to turn down the chance of European football three years ago with Rhyl as a player, now with Airbus as Head Coach, hopefully European football will be at the Airfield in the not too distant future”.
Owen will return to work with Harrison and Andrew Thomas over the next week or so as preparations continue for the new season, and whilst Owen arrives it is confirmed that Roger Preece has left the Club after one season, Preece is considering his options moving forward and both Chairman and Director of Football Harrison were quick to thank Preece`s efforts during his time at the Airfield, McKinlay said “I would like to thank Roger for his tremendous efforts last Season ,he is a seasoned professional in all that he does and we wish him well in his next role” Harrison also paid tribute “ Rog has been great to have around and I thank him for his knowledge and commitment during his time with us at the Airfield he is a great guy and a great Football Person and I wish him well in his Football Future”.
The New Structure at Airbus will be Harrison continuing in the Director of Football role overseeing all Football Matters with Owen as Head Coach and Andrew Thomas will continue in his Assistant Coach Role and Harrison was happy to have secured the services of Owen “It's great to work with Gareth again, we already have a ongoing relationship and really enjoyed working together 3 years ago, since then Gareth has gained great experience at this level with Rhyl which will only benefit Airbus longer term and he has been working hard in gaining invaluable experience with coaching regional and national squads within the trust and FAW ”.
Airbus expect to announce the remaining signings for the coming season over the course of the next 7/10days and in addition details about a Finalised Pre Season Friendly list and the New Season Admission Prices will be announced after the Clubs AGM this Thursday 16th June 2011.