Chris Coleman: Wales manager ready to agree new contract

Wales manager Chris Coleman celebrates his side's Euro 2016 qualification in Bosnia-Herzegovina
Wales manager Chris Coleman celebrates his side's Euro 2016 qualification in Bosnia-Herzegovina
Euro 2016 qualifiers: Wales v Andorra
Venue: Cardiff City Stadium Date: Tuesday, 13 October Kick-off: 19:45 BST
Coverage: Live on BBC Radio Wales, BBC Radio Cymru, BBC Radio 5 live and online

Wales manager Chris Coleman says he is ready to discuss a new contract now Euro 2016 qualification is secured.

Coleman's deal ends next summer but he has refused to negotiate an extension with the Football Association of Wales [FAW] during the qualifying campaign.

The 45-year-old believes reaching an agreement will be a formality but wants to ensure the correct "structure" is in place to ensure further improvement.

"Hopefully we can agree on that," he told BBC Wales Sport.

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"And it won't be about my contract, it will be about the structure and how we can take that forward.

"We've got to keep pushing these lads and that's the only way. It's not about resting now we've got to France.

"We've got think about how we replicate this campaign after we've been to France. We've got to qualify for the [2018] World Cup."

Coleman's contract would have expired after Tuesday's final group game against Andorra.

But FAW chief executive Jonathan Ford said Coleman's contract had been automatically extended until the end of next summer's finals.

"There's automatic clauses for Chris and I'm very confident, knowing Chris very well, that you don't just qualify and then leave," Ford told BBC Radio Wales

"You'll want to take the team and give them the very best chance in France.

"You factor those into the discussions when you start those contract discussions and it's quite common to have extending clauses based on qualification."

Proving the doubters wrong

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Wales' remarkable transformation under Coleman reached its pinnacle in Bosnia-Herzegovina on Saturday when their place at the Euro 2016 finals was assured despite a 2-0 defeat.

Before the game, Coleman revealed he had seriously considered walking away from the job a little over three years ago after a 6-1 humiliation in Serbia.

The former Fulham manager, who won 32 caps before injury accelerated his retirement, was not a universally popular choice when he was appointed in 2012 following the death of Gary Speed.

A faltering start promoted Coleman to admit his future was on the line a year-and-half into his tenure, but results began to improve and he has now been lauded for his meticulous planning and tactics that have seen Wales rise to eighth in the Fifa world rankings.

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The preparation now begins for the 24-team finals in France next summer, and Coleman has urged his players to build on the success that eluded so many of their predecessors.

"I'll never forget the feeling sitting in the dressing room when we lost to Romania in 1993," said Coleman of the 2-1 defeat in Cardiff when Wales needed a win to qualify for the 1994 World Cup.

"I remember the look on Terry Yorath's face, our manager. Terry was an incredibly brave man because he'd had tragedy losing his son Daniel and he carried on [with the job].

"He led us brilliantly and we lost to a better team in Romania and we missed out. And then under Mark Hughes as manager, I was injured so I missed most of the campaign, we got to the play-offs and missed out.

"You never lose that feeling of disappointment. So having the chance to put it right... and it's not about being the first one to do it - it's about now having the chance to compete on the big stage against the best teams; our team testing themselves against the best players."

What awaits Wales at the Euros?

The draw for the finals will take place on 12 December in Paris, where the 24 teams to qualify will be split into six groups of four.

Despite their lofty world ranking, Wales are likely to be among the bottom seeds because the draw will be based on the Uefa coefficient raking. They were ranked 25th when those rankings were last released in June.

Coleman, though, is confident his side will be a match for anyone having lost just once in their last 11 competitive matches.

"It's going to be an amazing tournament and that's something for us to enjoy and excel," he said. "It's pointless getting there and not doing the business.

"We'll go there and make sure we stamp our authority on it. We've got a good team to do that. It's going to be an enjoyable experience."

Euro 2016 facts and figures