Craig Bellamy admits to firm interest in vacant Wales job

20 November 2017, 23:29

Craig Bellamy is firmly interested in the vacant Wales job, and says it would be the "pinnacle" coaching job for him.

After Chris Coleman left the position last week to take up the Sunderland job, former Wales international striker Bellamy is second favourite with Sky Bet for the job at 5/2.

Bellamy is currently working in the youth set up at Cardiff, and has worked with the national team's younger age groups, and told Monday Night Football that he is interested in the vacant role.

"I'd always be interested in it, even now at this moment, of course I am. And looking further ahead I think I'd be interested in for the rest of my life. I'm passionately Welsh, it's the pinnacle for me, and I'd definitely be interested in that job.

"You're working with a group of players who are the most successful Welsh players in the history of Welsh football, getting to the semi-finals of a major competition.

"The group of players are there, the balance of the team, young players coming through, you need someone who has been involved in the set up for a number of years so you know who is coming through," before smiling and saying: "Which I do!"

He added: "It's a good position. I'm sure there will be plenty of people interested in it, and rightly so, due to what the Welsh FA have in place at this moment and the group of players you have to work with."

Former Newcastle, Man City and Liverpool striker Bellamy retired from international duty in 2013 after picking up 78 caps for Wales, and played with many of the current members of the squad.

The 38-year-old added that a move to a Premier League team would obviously be unrealistic at this stage, and said he has a lot of respect for the current crop, who missed out on qualification to the 2018 World Cup in Russia.

"Would it be realistic for me to go into a Premier League team? Of course it wouldn't be there, due to where the Premier league has gone to at this present moment.

"You look at the Championship: yeah, there are a number of clubs where I'd take a gamble, but then there is working through the youth systems, learning your trade that way. I've done that, and I'm still doing that, which I really enjoy.

"I've worked with Wales' younger age groups, so I've got a good idea of the system in place for producing young players in Wales. I've been heavily involved and enjoyed that too.

"I've played with this group of players, and I've also been through the hardest of times with these players too, so we know each other well. I respect a lot of them, and also I just feel it's in a healthy position at the moment.

"From the outside looking in, a good group of players who I see qualifying for the next tournament and the next one."