Wales sack Rob Page after fan revolt and failure to reach Euro 2024

Wales sack Rob Page after fan revolt and failure to reach Euro 2024
Rob Page had led Wales to their first World Cup in 64 years - PA/Nick Potts

Wales have sacked head coach Rob Page following their failure to qualify for the European Championship and their disastrous results in friendlies earlier this month.

Page has been under pressure for some time and was also criticised for the team’s disappointing results at the Qatar World Cup in 2022, when Wales finished bottom of a group containing England, the United States and Iran.

The 49-year-old has managed Wales at two major tournaments, but that record could not save his job after a goalless draw with lowly Gibraltar and a 4-0 defeat in Slovakia earlier this month.

After the Slovakia loss, in which the travelling Wales fans angrily turned on Page, he admitted: “They [the fans] want me out. I completely understand. I’ve got to stay true to myself and focused on the job in hand. Everything else is out of my control.”

Wales missed out on qualification for Euro 2024 in agonising circumstances, losing in a penalty shootout against Poland in March.

Since the World Cup, Page had been tasked with overseeing the move from the generation including Gareth Bale, Aaron Ramsey and Joe Allen towards a younger squad.

Page initially took the Wales job on a temporary basis in November 2020, when Ryan Giggs stepped away from the role following his arrest, and was later appointed permanently.

He and Wales were praised for their performances at Euro 2020, when they progressed into the knockout stages, and for then qualifying for the country’s first World Cup in 64 years.

Tension has risen behind the scenes since the tournament in Qatar, though, with constant speculation that Page was on the brink of losing his job.

With Euro 2024 ongoing without them, the Football Association of Wales have now decided to call time on his tenure.

Dave Adams, the FAW’s chief football officer, said: “I would like to thank Rob for his work with the association over the last seven years, firstly as the U21s head coach and then onto the role of Cymru head coach.

“Rob’s work has delivered success reaching the round of 16 at Euro 2020 and qualification to the 2022 FIFA World Cup, and during his period we also integrated 18 pathway players into the senior squad. As we move forward this experience will support our objective to consistently qualify our men’s national team to major tournaments.”

Wales have plenty of time to identify a replacement for Page, with their next game not until September. Their World Cup qualifying campaign begins in the spring of 2025.