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Tuesday, 09 July 2024 14:09

Craig Bellamy confirmed as Wales' new head coach.

By Rob Phillips and Chris Wathan.

Craig Bellamy has been appointed as the new head coach of the Wales national football team on a contract until 2028, the Football Association of Wales (FAW) announced Tuesday.

The 44-year-old succeeds former team-mate Robert Page, who was sacked in June.

Cardiff-born Bellamy won 78 Wales caps and captained the side between 2007-2010.

"It's an incredible honour for me to be given the opportunity to lead my country and it's the proudest moment of my career," said Bellamy.

"It was always my ultimate dream to become the Cymru head coach and I am ready for the challenge.

"I will give my full commitment to develop this team and I am passionate to bring continued success into Welsh football. I can't wait to get started with our Nations League games in September."

Bellamy takes up the role having left Burnley, where he had been acting head coach before Scott Parker's appointment last week.

Parker was keen to work with the Welshman, but Burnley chairman Alan Pace said Bellamy leaves with the blessings of everyone at the club.

"I want to thank Craig for all his hard work during his time at Burnley and wish him the best for his new position as Wales manager," said Pace.

"Craig has been a very important part of our wonderful journey the last two years. I've admired his leadership, knowledge and passion.

"I am certain that he will continue to find success in his new role, and I wish him the very best of luck."

Page guided Wales to their first World Cup in 64 years in 2022 and to the second round of Euro 2020 but failed to reach this year’s Euros, losing in a penalty shoot-out to Poland in a play-off.

But he subsequently oversaw one of the most embarrassing results in Wales’ history, a 0-0 draw with Gibraltar in a friendly and then suffered a 4-0 hammering at the hands of Slovakia.

Wales’ next game is the opening match of their Nations League campaign against Turkey on September 6, with a trip to Montenegro three days later.