HAVING helped Cefn Druids and Caernarfon Town gain promotion to the JD Cymru Premier, Gaz Edwards has every intention of repeating the feat with Airbus UK Broughton.

After relegation from the top flight at the end of the Covid-hit 2019-20 season, the Wingmakers lead Cymru North by four points after 13 games played.

Airbus, who have only lost once in the league this term, could extend their cushion at the summit on Friday night when second-placed Guilsfield visit the Hollingsworth Group Stadium.

Edwards admits leaving Caernarfon this summer after making more than 200 appearances for Cofis was tough, but the 38-year-old insists he has no regrets dropping out of the top tier to join Airbus.

“I’ve settled in well to my new surroundings,” said the defender. “I didn’t think I’d enjoy it as much as I am.

“Steve O’Shaughnessy, the manager, tried to sign me a couple of years ago, but I didn’t want to leave Caernarfon.

“Jamie Crowther, who I played with at Caernarfon, left to join Airbus as a player-coach last summer and I kept in touch with him.

“The opportunity then came up for me to sign for Steve and it felt like the right time for me to leave Caernarfon.

“It was a decision based on my family more than anything.

“I’m based in Chester and Airbus is on my doorstep, and I wanted to be closer to home and not travelling up and down the country every week.

“It’s nice to be home more now, spending more time with my daughters, and doing the things they enjoy doing.”

He added: “It was always going to be a difficult decision to leave Caernarfon.

“I’d been captain and had a really good relationship with the board and supporters.

“I could have gone on longer but it was the right time for me and my family.

“They are doing okay this season and long may it continue. I wish them all the best.”

Airbus have accrued 36 points out of a possible 39 in Cymru North, with O’Shaughnessy’s men winning 12 of their 13 fixtures to date.

They have been on fire in front of goal, putting seven past Prestatyn Town, scoring six against Penrhyncoch, Llanidloes Town and Holywell Town, and hitting Llangefni Town for five.

Their last outing yielded a 2-0 win at third-placed Llandudno, who sit behind unbeaten Guilsfield on goal difference.

“We were down to 10 men after half an hour against Llandudno and produced an unbelievable second-half performance,” added Edwards.

“It’s a really good set-up at Airbus. It’s a friendly club with a great academy programme that is producing youngsters who are coming through into the first-team.

“The team was relegated at the end of the Covid-hit season, when the final placings were determined on a points-per-game basis.

“Everyone at the club felt that was a harsh decision because results had started to pick up and the feeling was that they could have got out of it.

“The club is ready to go back, and fingers crossed I can help them do that.”

He added: “There are a few lads here who have experience of playing in the Cymru Premier.

“Simon Spender won the league title at TNS many times and was an excellent addition to the squad in the summer.

“There’s a nice balance to the team and squad with a mix of experience and youth.”

As a former top-tier team setting the pace in Cymru North, Edwards knows the Wingmakers are there to be shot at.

“Every game has its challenges in this division,” he said.

“There are a lot of village clubs with groups of lads that have played together for years, and those places are difficult to go to.

“Everyone wants to beat us because of our history in the league and Europe.

“It does feel like everyone gets a little bit more up for it when they are playing us than other teams, but I suppose that comes with the territory.

“The best thing for us is to approach each game as it comes and don’t look too far ahead.”

Now in the twilight of his career, aside from an ongoing adductor injury, Edwards says he is in good shape.

When asked how much longer he plans to keep playing for, he said: “I really don’t know. These legs aren’t getting any younger! As long as I’m enjoying it, I’ll keep going.

“I keep myself fit and active, and age is just a number. I know that’s a cliché but it’s how I feel.

“I still feel I’m playing well and contributing to the team, although I am carrying an injury which has been hard to shrug off.

“It’s something that’s been hampering me for seven or eight weeks and I’ve had a bit of time on the sidelines.

“I’ve had some good rehab and I'm just playing through the injury.

“But my concentration is on winning the league with Airbus and helping take them back into the Cymru Premier.”