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The surprise name among favourites to become new Wales boss

24 Jun 2024 2 minute read
Brighton coach Andrew Crofts (Wiki Commons)

David Owens

Since Rob Page was sacked as manager of Wales, there has been no shortage of names being bandied about as his successor by fans.

Amongst the early runners for the top job are Welsh coaches Osian Roberts (6/4) and Craig Bellamy (5/2).

While they are viewed by Welsh bookmaker Dragon Bet as the stand out favourites, there has been much conjecture over who else may be in the frame.

Sam Allardyce (6/1), who had a brief tenure as England manager, has declared his interest, while former French international Willy Sagnol (12/1), currently impressing as manager of Georgia at Euro 2024 has also been spoken about.

Coming up on the rails however – and currently fifth favourite at 14/1 according to Dragon Bet is Andrew Crofts.

He might be a name that may surprise many but dig a little deeper and you can see why the highly thought of former Welsh international could be one to watch.

A combative midfielder who played for Gillingham, Brighton, Norwich, and Charlton in a much travelled career that also included brief stops at Wrexham and Newport County, he is currently a first team coach at Premier League Brighton.

Although born in Chatham in Kent, thanks to having a Welsh grandparent, Crofts won the first of his 29 Welsh caps coming on as a substitute against Azerbaijan in October, 2005.

When his playing career came to an end in 2021, he became the head coach of the Seagulls academy after spending the previous season as a player-coach at the Amex Stadium.

On September 8th, 2022, he was appointed interim head coach of the Brighton first team after the departure of Graham Potter and after Roberto De Zerbi was announced as Potter’s replacement, Crofts was appointed to the first team coaching staff.

Now new Seagulls’ boss Fabian Huerzeler is in place he had no hesitation in appointing the impressive Crofts as a key part of his technical set-up for the forthcoming season.

Crofts then. A dark horse for the Wales job? Only time will tell on that front, but at the very least it’s good to know that there is yet another highly thought of Welsh coach making a name for himself in the Premier League.

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