Dunfermline Athletic

Meet Owain Fôn Williams

Friday, 31st Jan 2020

Dunfermline’s newly signed keeper has vast experience including with Chris Coleman’s Welsh team at the 2016 Euros.

Speaking exclusively to the club website, Owain Fôn Williams gave a short walk through his football career this far. He had just about calmed down after the whirlwind that had seen him arrive for training at Dunfermline on Thursday morning.

“It was a surprise in some regards. I’m delighted to be here, I have had a good chat with the gaffer and the staff here and I’m looking forward to what’s left of the season.

“I have played the majority of the games for Hamilton this season, about 21 games so far. I had a decision to make and I’m here. I always like to in charge of myself if that makes sense. I had a great experience at Hamilton and I have always done my best, I always have so there are no bad feelings.

“I am lucky that Brian Rice gave me this opportunity to come here, or at least talk to Dunfermline. I am grateful of both opportunities.

“The main thing for me is to finish the season strong here. Collectively as a group hopefully we can push on and get into the play offs. That would be nice.”

The move came about at very short notice so Owain had not watched Dunfermline’s 2-0 win over Dundee that was broadcast live on BBC Scotland, he did however acknowledge that it was a great result.

“It brings us closer to Dundee and puts us back in the mix. I trained with the lads on Thursday, we worked on a few things and I am looking forward to working towards the game on Saturday.”

No stranger to Owain is one of the centre backs in the Pars team:-

“I know Danny (Devine) very well, I worked with him up at Inverness. He is a very good defender, very good on the ball. It is nice to know someone in the dressing room.

“Coming in at this time in the season can be a bit of a whirlwind. When you come into a club in the summer, everyone comes in together with a clean sheet. There are going to be new players, players from the past, all sorts of different types coming together into one room. Everyone is in the same boat.

“It is a little bit different when you come in on the last day of the January window. You are the only new guy walking into the dressing room, trying to remember everyone’s names and getting to know what they are like as people and as players. It is different things.

“I am thrilled with the opportunity and I am really looking forward to the challenge ahead.”

At the ripe old age of 32, Owain will be surrounded in the dressing room by young players. In fact they are all younger, he continued:-

“They are very young, plenty of energy, lads full of life which is great. Energy can rub off on people and you need that. You need the other side of things as well - the calmness that comes with age and experience.

“I spoke to Danny briefly before I came here and he had brilliant things to say about the dressing room and the club. It was something that I wanted to do and I am delighted to be here.

“I am here to learn and develop myself. It is a mad thing really but 32 as a goalkeeper is not that old. I have plenty more to learn and I want to pick up, learn and see how the gaffer, Jason, Greg and Davie work.”

Owain has played over 400 first team games and he praises the route that had caused him to have had so many starts:-

“I was given the opportunity to go to a bigger club, which I could have done or you go lower and play games. That is what I chose to do. I went to Stockport County in League One and that was a great league for a goalkeeper to learn in. Football there is a real learning curve and I thankful for the opportunity that I have been given throughout my career by different managers and different coaches who believed in me.”

It was at the Crewe Alexandria Football Academy that Owain developed to be able to make his move to Stockport. After 91 appearances for County he moved to Rochdale and then Tranmere Rovers

He was part of Chris Coleman’s Welsh international squad by the time he accepted the move to Inverness Caley Thistle in 2015. Playing Scottish Premier League football kept him in the international team’s sights and for such a passionate Welshman that was all that mattered.

“We qualified then for the Euros and I was with Wales there purely because of that move and playing at that level. There is a path for us all and sometimes you have got to make that part work for you.”

Due to growing up in such a remote part of North West Wales Owain was too far away to sign for any professional club until he was sixteen.

“I was going back and forth to Man U all the time. When I turned sixteen I was able to sign for Liverpool. When I was offered another contract there I decided to go to Crewe then because a friend of mine was at Liverpool at the time, Matthew Parry. He was a goalkeeper.

“He was about five or six years older than me at the time. He was over the moon to be number three at Liverpool and he was only about 22. A couple of months later when it was time for me to decide what I was going to do, Liverpool signed another three or four goalkeepers. He went to number seven and a few weeks later he was released. My dad said that wasn’t going to happen with you. I am always thankful of his guidance.”

When Inverness got relegated and while away with Wales in Serbia in a World Cup qualifier, Owain received an offer to go and play in the United States with Indy Eleven.

“I loved it there but my partner was pregnant there and we felt that he should get back nearer to her family in Inverness. During this time Brian Rice gave me a call and asked me to come to Hamilton with him.

“Brian Rice was one of the staff who took me to Inverness in the first place, he was the assistant manager there at the time. I was keen on working with him again and that’s why I ended up at Hamilton and now at Dunfermline.”

Owain is hoping to make his Dunfermline debut at Palmerston Park on Saturday.

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