Under-fire Page 'low' as fans turn on Wales boss

“They [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"

Rob Page says he felt “low” after facing more boos from Wales fans following a 4-0 thrashing in Slovakia which heaped pressure on the beleaguered manager.

Page was given a hostile reception by Wales’ 1,000 supporters in Trnava, having been subjected to chants calling for his sacking last Thursday after a humiliating goalless friendly draw with minnows Gibraltar in Portugal.

The 49-year-old is contracted until 2026 but admits his future is out of his hands, with these results raising fresh doubts after a disappointing season in which Wales failed to qualify for Euro 2024.

“They [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,” Page told BBC Sport Wales after the 4-0 loss.

“I clapped them with the players and when the players walked, I made a point of going over to the supporters and saying ‘it’s on me’. I get the frustration.

“[I feel] low, disappointed, of course. I’m human at the end of the day and nobody wants to fail.”

Asked if these results could have a bearing on his future, Page added: “I’m the wrong person to be asking. Only the board, the chief executive, the president, the technical director – that’s a question for them.

“After camp, we have a conversation with Dave Adams [Football Association of Wales technical director] and Steve [Williams, FAW president] and Noel [Mooney, FAW chief executive]. Of course we’ll have those conversations.

“One way or the other, we will decide on what’s right for Wales and move forward.”

Senior figures at the FAW have yet to comment on Page’s position but said they “review each camp and reflect properly” as they do after any international window.

However, there was an air of resignation to Page as he conducted his post-match interviews in Trnava.

Although friendly matches would not usually determine a manager’s future, these results followed a 12-month period which included an embarrassing home defeat by Armenia and subsequent failure to qualify for Euro 2024 which prompted criticism for Page.

If he is to stay in post, Wales’ next game will be in the Nations League in September at home to Turkey, one of the teams who pipped them to Euros qualification.

“The form coming into it has been all right but when you draw against Gibraltar and you get beaten with the goals we have tonight, questions are going to be asked. I completely understand that,” said Page.

“I’m just focused on what I need to do. This camp served its purpose – to play a different formation – and we plan now for September.”


Original article published 09.06.2024 on the BBC Sport website.

To view the full article, click here 

© The Fan Experience Company 2024