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Airbus UK Broughton: Harrison stays on but Jiws leaves

CRAIG Harrison has signed a new contract to keep him at the Airfield next season.

Former assistant manager Harrison took charge of Airbus UK Broughton in 2008 when Gareth Owen left for Rhyl.

The ex-Middlesbrough and Crystal Palace star kept the Wingmakers in the top flight last season as clubs such as Rhyl and Gap Connah’s Quay dropped out as a result of the FAW’s restructuring of the Welsh Premier League which will create a new ‘Super 12’ division of a dozen teams for 2010-11.

“I am delighted to extend my contract with the club,” said Harrison.

“The three main points for re-signing my contract were that I have a good working relationship with the chairman, I am working for a club that is desperate to continue moving forwards and I would have the opportunity to continue to work with and improve the same set of players.

“All in all the continuity we have excites me for the future. Getting into the Super 12 was our pre-season target and we achieved that both on and off the field.

“Now 99% of the squad has re-signed as well which is fantastic for the club and bringing in two or three new faces will freshen up the squad and will help us hopefully build upon last season’s successes.

“I am really looking forward to the new season in the Super 12.”

Continuity may have been a factor in Harrison’s decision, but one player who will not be returning to the Airfield will be Marc Lloyd Williams.

The evergreen Welsh goalscoring legend has decided to leave Airbus for pastures new after one campaign.

During his brief stay he broke the club’s goalscoring record in the Welsh Premier with 16 goals to his name. Despite suffering a drought in the latter half of the season which saw him benched for the final run-in, he finished as the club’s top goalscorer for the season.

But Harrison is looking to the future and will continue to be assisted by Andrew Thomas.

He has also agreed deals to keep 15 of last season’s squad at the Airfield and has added young prospect Jake Cassidy from Llandudno Junction to his squad.

Airbus have announced an extensive preseason campaign which includes visits to the Airfield from Everton, Wrexham and the newly re-formed Chester FC.

The Toffees will send a side out to Broughton on Saturday, July 17 at 3pm.

Neil Young’s Chester side will follow on Tuesday, July 20 at 7.30pm and Wrexham arrive eight days later on Wednesday, July 28 at 7.30pm

As a special deal for Airbus fans for £12 you can pre-purchase a ticket for all three matches. For more details call 01244 522302.

Prices on matchday will remain at £6 adults, £3 concessions, with Airbus donating half of the gate money for the Chester match to Chester FC.

Airbus’ full preseason schedule so far is: Wednesday, June 30 – Cefn Druids, Plaskynaston Lane, 7.15pm; Wednesday, July 7 – Llangollen Town, The Airfield, 7.30pm; Saturday, July 10 – Winsford United, Barton Stadium, 3pm; Wednesday, July 14 – Ellesmere Rangers, Beech Grove, 7.30pm; Saturday, July 17 – Everton, The Airfield, 3pm; Tuesday, July 20 – Chester FC, The Airfield, 7.30pm; Saturday, July 24 – Porthmadog, Y Traeth 2.30pm; Wednesday, July 28 – Wrexham, The Airfield, 7.30pm; Saturday, July 31 – Droylsden, The Airfield, 3pm; Tuesday, August 3 – Buckley Town, Globe Way, 7.30pm; Saturday, August 7 – Fylde, The Airfield 3pm.

Relegated clubs in the Welsh Premier League and Cymru Alliance – including Gap Connah’s Quay – are still waiting to see if a planned revolt by Bethesda Athletic will materialise.

The club have stated they plan to challenge the FAW’s reorganisation of the Welsh football pyramid using the constitution of the Alliance, which they claim has breached, although no further action has yet taken place.