CHRIS COLEMAN has opened the door to a Wales return.
And the Welsh FA could have a decision to make if manager Ryan Giggs’ ‘assault’ case drags on into early next year ahead of Euro 2020.
Giggs will miss Wales’ trio of internationals this month, starting with Thursday’s friendly against the USA in Swansea after he was arrested on November 1.
The Dragons boss is currently on bail, pending inquiries by police, on suspicion of actual bodily harm and assault after an alleged bust-up with his girlfriend.
Robert Page will act as caretaker manager for those games.
Coleman was not asked directly if he would fancy stepping in as an emergency if Giggs is unavailable.
But the man who led Wales to the semi-finals of Euro 2016 admitted he would consider a second spell to manage his country in the future.
Coleman told S4C: “I’ve said before, ‘No, I wouldn’t do it’, ‘I don’t want to do this’ and ‘I’d never do that’.
“I’m 50 now, so with experience you can never say never.”
Cookie’s name, as well as fellow ex-Wales boss Mark Hughes, were mentioned in initial Welsh FA talks last week following Giggs’ shock arrest.
If a short-term appointment needs to be made, the ex-Fulham, Coventry and Real Sociedad chief would tick a lot of boxes.
He has a good relationship with senior star players including Gareth Bale and Aaron Ramsey, he blooded the likes of Ethan Ampadu and David Brooks, his stock remains high with the Welsh supporters and he has tournament experience after guiding Wales to the last four in France four years ago.
Since Coleman left the Wales job in November 2017 after failing to qualify for the World Cup, he has had spells at Sunderland and Chinese Super League outfit Hebei China Fortune.
And, after 18 months away from the dugout, he is relishing the chance to get back into management.
Coleman added: “I don’t know where I’ll be in five years, ten years, well, in ten years I’ll probably be retired as I’ll be 60!
“I’ve got no idea where the next challenge is going to come from. I’ve still got plenty of fire in my belly because I love football.
“I love working with football players. I don’t know where I’m going to end up, I really don’t. I couldn’t say ‘I’m definitely not going to do this; or ‘I’m definitely going to do that’.
“I think what experience has taught me one thing is you never ever know.”
After Wales face USA at the Liberty Stadium, they then take on Ireland on Sunday and Finland next Wednesday in crunch Nations League games in Cardiff.
But then there is a four-month international break until March when preparations for the Euro 2020 finals will ramp up.
At this stage, the Welsh FA and chief executive Jonathan Ford face a waiting game from Greater Manchester Police to see if the case continues and any charges are made.
Giggs denies all the allegations of assault against him and is cooperating with the police.