The JCP Interview: Joe Clarke

Joe Clarke playing against Brighton and Hove Albion in the FA Cup

Joe Clarke playing against Brighton and Hove Albion in the FA Cup

Can you give us a brief history of your career as a footballer?
I played Sunday league up until sixteen, started at bottom of non- league for Coleshill Town, Solihull Borough then moved up to Redditch United, Solihull Moors, Evesham back to Solihull Moors then got my move to Darlington two years ago for six months, then back to Solihull Moors at the end of the season then come to Wrexham where this is my second season.

Fans owned club, does it feel any different?
We don’t really see a lot from behind the scenes side of things but it is a lot more relaxed, this year we haven’t had to worry about anything off field. You can tell
the fans are a lot more behind the team as it is their club at the end of the day.
I’m sure there will be a great turnout for all the games this season, so yes, everyone feels really comfortable, no issues and looking forward to getting off and running on Saturday with a win.

Since signing for Wrexham, how much of the clubs history and traditions have you become aware of?
The FA Cup run last season was the big one with Mickey Thomas scoring the goal against Arsenal really sticks out. Obviously, Wrexham is a massive club and has played at a high level for many years and the television cameras recreating Mickey’s goal at Colliers Park really stood out.

Are you aware of the great 77/78 team? If not, there is a DVD available priced at £10 from the WST shop?

I’ll have to buy one of them!!

The adidas kit for this season?
There was an article in the programme I read, I didn’t know a lot about it but it’s we’ve got an adidas kit this season, can we get promotion this season as well.

What’s the biggest prank you’ve played on someone since you’ve been at Wrexham?
I’d have to say burning Jamie Tolley’s boots as he was leaving us, that was a good prank.

Did he take it well?
He took it well, case of having to!! They were old boots anyway!

Has the team got a statto/boffin?
Last year it was Nathaniel, he was clever. Tough one this year, we’re not the brightest bunch! Ashy thinks he’s a bit clever, Keatesy is an older head but I don’t think he’s the brightest, Danny Wright maybe. Think we’re struggling a bit with that one with Nat leaving.

If you had to take a player home to meet your parents who would it be?
Ashy probably, he’s a family man and he’s got manners.

Who wouldn’t you take home?
Tough one, plenty to choose from!! Probably Joslain, he’d be messy and a bit of a nightmare!!

Is Creights really a beast? We reckon he’s a pussy cat!!
Obviously on the he’s a solid rock and a Beast but off the field he’s a big friendly giant.

Which one of the little ‘uns we’ve got packs the biggest punch?
Plenty to choose from, I can say that as they are not within earshot!
I’d have to say Jay Harris, he loves a tackle.

Who’s the best looking player at the club? Fans think Glen is a really pretty lad but personally I don’t see it?
I don’t think they are after his looks, I think his personality gets him through it, and he looks like that bloke from home alone!! Got a few good looking lads,
Danny Wright, who looks a bit like me, so us two?

How long did it take you to get over the playoff defeat?
A while to be fair, but we didn’t dwell on it too much. The gaffer said to let it go, so it was a week or two before we started to focus on getting ready for next season. We were gutted but we gave it everything and hopefully it will be third time lucky for us.

Is there any opposition you dislike playing?
We had tough games against Forest Green last year and they’ll be strong this year but looking forward to playing everyone this year.

Booing, is it counterproductive or does it drive the players on?
It’s not nice really, although I haven’t witnessed any so we must be doing something right! I can’t see it working though! Fans pay their money though and if things are not going well they get frustrated which we understand.

What has been your favourite Wrexham game?
I’d have to say the Brighton game. Away game was good because it was the biggest ground I’d played on and they were the highest ranked side coming from the Championship getting a 1-1 draw. The replay though was probably the best. There were 10,000 fans at the Racecourse and the atmosphere was incredible. Gutted to lose on penalties, but team played well and I had a good game and everyone who watched it said how impressed they were with Wrexham.

Do you still keep a scrapbook of your achievements?
Yes, my mum does. She knows someone in work who lives in the area so they give her the press cuttings from the Daily Post.

Have you got a favourite Wrexham chant?
I haven’t really got many (come on Wrexham fans, lets come up with a good one for him), I remember the fans singing ‘there’s only one Joe Clarke’ as I was being carried off after injuring my back. I like a couple of the Danny Wright ones.

If you could play a dream friendly match for Wrexham, who would it be against?
Manchester City, I know a couple of their players and it would be great to play against them.

As a kid growing up, being a goalkeeper and Wrexham fan, I used to pretend I was Dai Davies. Who did you pretend to be?
I didn’t support the teams he used to play for but I used to like to be Teddy Sheringham. I was a big fan of him as I used to play up front as a junior.

Who is the worst dressed player at the club?
Got a few, Chiz and Joslain I’d say.

Apart from beach volleyball, obviously, which sports have you enjoyed watching at the Olympics this summer?
Hockey’s good, the Netherlands’ women’s hockey team are really good! I’ve enjoyed a lot of it to be honest. The swimming has been good, the athletics, the cycling, I’ve been really getting into it. The women’s football game when USA beat Canada with the last header of the game in extra, extra time was fantastic.

Have you ever explored the countryside in the Wrexham area? If not would you go on a nature trail with the fans?
I’ve not been on a nature trail since I was about 8 years old in primary school!! I have been out a couple of times into the town centre and think I’ll leave it there!

Have you tried a pint of Wrexham Lager yet?
No I don’t think so, will definitely have to try it.

What was the last game you paid to watch?
England v Holland in a friendly just before Euros this year.

Who is the best player in the world in your position?
That’s a tough one, Iniesta, Xavi Alonso or Dean Keates.

Would you ever play for Chester?
Who? Can’t play for them!

How does it feel to be sponsored by the elite of the Wrexham fan base, aka JCP?
Obviously it’s brilliant. It’s nice to know you are liked, and fans think a lot of you.

Finally, I sit in the Mold Road Stand about half way up near the middle; will you wave to me when you come onto the pitch please?
No problem!

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One thought on “The JCP Interview: Joe Clarke

  1. Pingback: answers to how Clarke questions? - RedPassion.co.uk - Wrexham

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