Belfast Telegraph

Proud Coleman would never be interested in England job

Home boy: Chris Coleman
Home boy: Chris Coleman

BY Ian Herbert

Wales manager Chris Coleman declared on Sunday night that he would never contemplate managing England, despite taking his nation to a European Championship semi-final against Portugal.

England's Football Association, who are prepared to pay £4m Premier League wages to recruit their next manager.

Coleman, whose salary will rise to £400,000-a-year when his new contract kicks in after the Euro 2016 finals, said that taking on the job was "something that would never, ever enter my thinking to be honest. I'm a Welshman through and through. I've only ever wanted, at international football, it was only Wales, it would only ever be Wales."

Coleman's side are the tournament's top scorers and have won more knockout ties in Euro 2016 than England have mustered in the entire past 20 years.

But when asked if he would be willing to offer advice to the FA when this competition is finished, the 46-year-old avoided a straight answer.

"The English FA?" he said. "Do you know what, I've no idea what's going on back at home. I've no idea."

Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger is the top choice managerial candidate for England, though is thought to be unconvinced that the job holds appeal.

Wales face the double blow of being without Arsenal's Aaron Ramsey and Tottenham Hotspur's Ben Davies against the Portuguese in Lyon, for a game which may break Welsh all-time record TV viewing figures for the second time in five days.

A record 1.26m in Wales - more than a third of the country's population - watched Friday's 3-1 quarter final win over Belgium.

Crystal Palace's Johnny Williams thought to be marginally ahead of Leicester City's Andy King to replace Ramsey.

Coleman is considering reshuffling personnel to cope with Davies' absence - bringing in Fulham's Jazz Richards at right back and freeing Chris Gunter to fill Davies' role at centre half, but West Ham United's James Collins is also in contention for the central defensive role.

Coleman said it was unjust that his players were booked when Belgium's Eden Hazard was not.

"Eden Hazard gets the ball and starts bouncing it with his hand and doesn't get a yellow card," Coleman said. "

"It is what it is. We just have to do our job."

Belfast Telegraph