Chris Coleman will leave time for the “dust to settle” on Wales’ unsuccessful World Cup qualifying campaign before making a decision on his future as coach.
Wales’ hopes of reaching the competition for the first time since 1958 were dashed by a 1-0 defeat to the Republic of Ireland at the Cardiff City Stadium on Monday.
Coleman’s side consequently finished third in Group D, with Ireland advancing to the play-off stage behind Serbia following James McClean’s second-half winner.
Despite guiding the nation to an unprecedented semi-final at Euro 2016, failure to earn a place in Russia has forced the 47-year-old contemplate his next move.
“The only picture in my mind is the faces of the players in the dressing room and the disappointment. They’re inconsolable at the moment,” Coleman, who has been linked with Premier League clubs in the past, told Sky Sports.
“I know why they’re like that, but they should feel very proud with what they’ve done.
“I’m going to be asked about my situation, but I’m going to take some time and wait for the dust to settle. Then we will have a sit down and a chat, take it from there.”
— Wales (@FAWales) October 9, 2017
Wales were without star man Gareth Bale due to a calf injury and lost Joe Allen in the first half following a blow to the head, and Coleman felt they suffered as a result.
“I thought, on the balance of play, we pretty much dominated the first half. But we knew Ireland would have a gameplan and they executed it very well,” said the 47-year-old.
“They hit us the counter-attack, a sucker punch, so hats off to them.
“Once you lose Joe Allen, and we were already without Gareth, then our creativity suffers a little bit. There were 10 men behind the ball really and we found that hard to break down.
“Fair play to the Republic of Ireland. Martin [O’Neill]’s done a great job and good luck to them in the play-offs.
“For us, I think that’s the first game we’ve lost here for four years. What do you say to our players? In another campaign they’ve given everything, yet it wasn’t enough to get us over the line.
“I cannot ask for any more. It’s the last game and that’s our first defeat of the campaign. A point was no good, we needed three points so we had to go for it.
“The group of players we’ve got, with their age and experience, are going to get better. There’s another World Cup that’s got away from us, and that will hurt for a bit. We will learn from tonight.”
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