11 Days Remaining

Thursday 2nd
posted by Morning Star in Sport

CHRIS COLEMAN believes Wales are at an “important crossroads” as talks continued yesterday over whether he will remain as manager.

Coleman named a 24-man squad for November friendlies against France and Panama after last month’s failure to qualify for the 2018 World Cup.

But Coleman says he has “no idea” whether these two games will be his last in charge after holding initial talks with the Football Association of Wales (FAW) about his future.

Coleman wants certain assurances from the FAW — most of them surrounding structural and support staff issues — which he believes is essential to take Wales forward.

“If you’re managing Wales this is not where you make your fortune,” said Coleman, who has been linked with Premier League vacancies at Everton and Leicester since Wales’ World Cup elimination.

“That’s how it is, that’s OK. But I look at us at where we are and where we’ve come from.

“I wouldn’t say it is critical, but we are at an important crossroads — are we going to take it on?

“I have to ask: ‘Am I the man to take it on and have I got the tools to take it the next step?’

“The next step is going to be harder because the margins are smaller.

“We’ve been a top 10 team in the last couple of years and to maintain that or take it on it means we need to do things a bit differently.

“Maybe not all parties will agree on that when we sit down, but that’s my take on it.”

Coleman’s current contract has a break clause which means both parties could go their separate ways at the end of November.

A players’ delegation — including star man Gareth Bale and skipper Ashley Williams — met Coleman straight after last month’s defeat to the Republic of Ireland ended their World Cup hopes.

But the 47-year-old hinted that plenty of talking still has to be done to decide whether he stays in a job he has held since January 2012.

“There will probably be another two or three conversations before we get to a yes or a no from either party,” Coleman said.

“Either Wales will say: ‘No, Chris we can’t do that — we can’t take it to there’ and I’m saying: ‘That’s what I need to take this further and you can’t give me that.’

“If that happens I’ll say: ‘That’s fine, let’s shake hands, it’s been great.’

“But we’re not there yet and it will definitely be after this camp that we’ll get together and speak again.”