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Ryan Giggs ‘sad’ after leaving Wales manager with immediate effect

Ryan Giggs has expressed his sadness at not being at the 2022 World Cup after stepping down as Wales manager with immediate effect.

Giggs has been on leave since November 2020 and faces a domestic violence trial in Manchester on August 8.

Wales qualified for their first World Cup in 64 years earlier this month under Robert Page, and former Manchester United star Giggs, 48, has now confirmed he will not wouldn’t be in Qatar this winter.

Ryan Giggs faces a domestic violence trial in Manchester on August 8 (Peter Byrne/PA)

In a lengthy statement, Giggs said: “After careful consideration, I am stepping down as manager of the Wales Men’s National Team with immediate effect.

“It has been an honor and a privilege to lead my country, but it is only right that the Wales FA, the coaching staff and the players prepare for the tournament with certainty, clarification and without speculation around the position. of their head coach.

“As has been widely publicized, I have pleaded not guilty to the criminal charges at Manchester Crown Court.

“While I have confidence in our legal process, I had hoped that the case would be heard sooner to allow me to resume my managerial responsibilities. Through no one’s fault, the case was delayed.

Wales v Belgium - 2022 FIFA World Cup - European Qualifiers - Group E - Cardiff City Stadium
Robert Page guided Wales to their first World Cup in 64 years in Giggs’ absence (David Davies/PA)

“I do not want the country’s preparations for the World Cup to be affected, destabilized or compromised in any way by the continued interest around this matter.

“I had the chance to live unforgettable moments during my three years at the head of the national team.

“I am proud of my record and will cherish these special moments forever.”

Giggs, who was appointed Wales manager in January 2018, led the Dragons to Euro 2020 – their second major tournament in four years.

But the tournament was delayed by 12 months due to the coronavirus pandemic, and his assistant Robert Page took charge of last summer’s tournament as Wales reached the last 16.

Wales Manager Announcement - Hensol Castle
Giggs (left) poses with former Football Association of Wales chief executive Jonathan Ford after he was appointed Wales manager in January 2018 (Ben Birchall/PA)

Giggs added: “It has been a pleasure to work with such established and senior professionals, and it has given me immense pride to see so many young players progressing through the national team and thriving in the red colours. of our country.

“I am humbled and grateful to our passionate supporters for following us around the world.

“Seeing nearly 3,000 of our loyal traveling fans in Baku for the European Championship qualifiers against Azerbaijan made me appreciate the sacrifices people make to watch our nation play.

“I’m sad that we can’t continue this journey together as I believe this amazing group will do the country proud at our first World Cup since 1958.

“I would like to thank General Manager Noel Mooney, his predecessor Jonathan Ford, the FAW Board of Directors, and the many people behind the scenes who work tirelessly to help our national team and for the support they give me. have brought during this difficult time in my personal life.

“I intend to resume my managerial career at a later date and look forward to seeing our national team alongside you in the stands.

“Finally, I would like to wish the players, staff and fans of FAW every success at the World Cup and in the future.”

Giggs is accused of controlling and coercive behavior against his former girlfriend Kate Greville between August 2017 and November 2020.

Wales v Ukraine - 2022 FIFA World Cup Qualifier - Play Off - Final - Cardiff City Stadium
Wales captain Gareth Bale celebrates the World Cup play-off final win over Ukraine earlier this month (David Davies/PA)

Giggs is also charged with assaulting Ms Greville, causing her actual bodily harm, and assaulting her younger sister, Emma Greville, at her home in Worsley, Greater Manchester on November 1, 2020.

He denied the allegations and pleaded not guilty to all charges.

Giggs was due to stand trial in January, but it was postponed for seven months due to the backlog of court cases following the coronavirus pandemic.

“The Football Association of Wales acknowledges the personal statement issued by Ryan Giggs on June 20, 2022,” the FAW said.

“The FAW acknowledges its gratitude to Ryan Giggs for his tenure as manager of the Cymru Men’s National Team and appreciates the decision he has made, which is in the best interests of Welsh football.

“FAW and the Cymru Men’s National Team are fully focused on the FIFA World Cup in Qatar later this year.”