With Ryan Reynolds' Wrexham on the brink of promotion to the English Football League, let's look at where exactly the team's nickname “Red Dragons” came from.
The truth is that the nickname is a relatively recent development. The 150-year-old storied club was initially known as the Robins.
Wrexham's founding and modern-day nickname
Founded in 1864, Wrexham is the third-oldest professional football club in the world, after Notts County (founded in 1862) and Stoke City (founded in 1863).
Wrexham's home ground, the Racecourse Ground, is the oldest international football stadium in the world that still hosts matches.
The team adopted the “The Robins” nickname in the early 1900s after famed head coach Ted Robinson, who managed the team from 1912 to 1924. During that time, people frequently referred to the red team as “Robin's Team.”
Wrexham shared the nickname with Bristol City, Swindon Town, and Cheltenham Town. It took another 40 years before the club started to redefine itself.
Wrexham introduced the Dragon on its uniform in 1967. But it was only under rebranding pressures from the club's commercial manager in 2001 that the team officially changed its nickname to the Red Dragons.
In addition to adopting the “Red Dragons” handle, Wrexham introduced “Wrex” the Dragon, as the official team mascot. Wrex sports a red face and wears the team's home kit with the number 1864, representing the year of the club's establishment.
The Red Dragons take the international stage
In addition to the team nickname, Wrexham's fortunes have significantly transformed. In 2021, Hollywood stars Ryan Reynolds and Rob McElhenney took over the club. The Wales side, once known as the “The Robins” is now on the cusp of promotion to the English Football League.
The club is also a worldwide sensation due to its solid financial backing and famous owners who subsequently inked the team with a TV deal. Last year, the team gained prominence with the FX sports documentary TV show “Welcome to Wrexham.”
With the team poised to move up to England's fourth tier after a victory against Boreham Wood this weekend, they'll take their rising popularity to the United States for a pre-season tour.