Ryan Giggs is said to be preparing to officially step down as Wales football manager in the coming days as his court trial date looms.
He has not been involved in the Wales camp since his arrest in November 2020 on suspicion of assault, when he stood down from the role in the wake of the allegations which he denies.
In his absence, interim manager Rob Page has guided Wales through Euro 2020 and most recently oversaw the country’s qualification for a first World Cup in 64 years.
The Daily Mail now report that Giggs, 48, is to announce his decision to formally step down in the coming days after holding talks with FAW officials. Giggs is reported to have been pushing to finalise the move after Wales’ World Cup qualification on June 5, while sources close to the Welsh camp are reported to have disclosed that Giggs wants to bring closure to the situation following the delay of his court case and does not want it to distract from Wales’ on-field success.
Online outlet Mail+ say Giggs “remains determined to clear his name, but given proceedings are now unlikely to take place until August, he feels that now is the time for clarification, sources in Wales have said.”
The FAW declined to comment on the matter when contacted by WalesOnline.
Former Manchester United player Giggs has been charged with allegedly assaulting his ex-partner and alleged coercive control. He was arrested in November 2020, before the Crown Prosecution Service brought charges in April 2021 following an investigation by Greater Manchester Police. He is accused of causing actual bodily harm to his former partner Katie Greville and assault by beating of her sister Emma Greville in an alleged incident outside his Greater Manchester home on November 1, 2020. Giggs, who denies all charges against him, is also accused of coercive and controlling behaviour against Katie Greville between December 2017 and November 2020.
His trial is set to begin on August 8. It had been scheduled for Manchester Crown Court in January 2022 but was postponed due to a lack of courtroom capacity with the court having to prioritise other trials. Giggs was granted conditional bail which prevents him from having contact with the alleged victims and from attending any address where they are present.
In a statement issued at the time he was charged, Giggs said: “I have full respect for the due process of law and understand the seriousness of the allegations. I will plead not guilty in court and look forward to clearing my name.”
Under current terms, Giggs technically remains under contract as Wales manager until the World Cup dream is over. That was always going to be either at the tournament itself this winter, or if Wales went out in qualifying. You can read more about that here.