Gareth Ainsworth says he’s excited to continue his summer recruitment and create more success stories in the mould of Uche Ikpeazu, who earned a move to Middlesbrough this week following an excellent season in the light and dark blue quarters.
The striker became a hit with Chairboys fans for his powerhouse performances and spectacular strikes, but rather than dwell on the absence of Ikpeazu going forward, Ainsworth says the deal motivates him to reinvest in more quality additions to his side who can make a similar impression.
“What a story, and what a move for Uche,” said Ainsworth. “It’s what we do here – we bring players in and help develop them. I remember when we signed him, a few fans of his old clubs wondered why he was coming here, but all he needed was a bit of belief.
“Now we’ll go and get the next one in. I’ve been showing potential signings round the building and hopefully we can get some over the line soon. Uche will always be in Wycombe folklore and we wish him well, but now we look forward to the next new signing.”
And those new recruits will walk into a vastly improved Marlow Road training ground, which has undergone significant development and renovation thanks in no small part to the work of a team of volunteers throughout the summer.
“It’s awesome here; there’s a really good mood around the camp as always, and the improvements around the place… just wow. It’s a world away from what it was before. It’s brilliant to be showing players around and it helps get deals over the line.
“We want to be in the Championship, we want to be Championship standard, and we’re so pleased with the facility we’ve got here.
“The volunteers are so good at what they do. People like this epitomise the spirit and togetherness we have here. We’re finally getting this place in a really good way, making the players comfortable, and we want them to pay us back in performances. We’ll give the players our best, and give them everything they need to play to the best of their ability.”
And as for new recruits, Josh Scowen was the first arrival earlier this week and Ainsworth says there’ll be more to come, both for the first-team and the development squad, with plenty of trialists lined up throughout pre-season.
“I always knew Josh would be a super player and now he comes back here to show us what a player he’s become since he left us in 2015. We want to get him performing to the level he reached in the Championship; he sets an example on the pitch, he gives everything, and I’m really pleased to have him.
“We’ve got players coming in on trial from some pretty big clubs in the development squad and it’s a really exciting time. I can’t thank the Couhigs enough for their backing, and to Andrew Howard who’s working hard on contracts. Everyone’s giving their all for this club and we’re going to give it a right go this year.”