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Chris Coleman thanks players but hopes Panama draw was not his Wales swan song

Chris Coleman thanks players but hopes Panama draw was not his Wales swan song
By PA Sport

15/11/2017 at 07:24Updated 15/11/2017 at 07:32

Chris Coleman said he hoped he was not managing Wales for the final time after the 1-1 draw with Panama.

Coleman is set to thrash out his future in the next week as he resumes talks with the Football Association of Wales over a new deal.

The 47-year-old wants certain guarantees over his backroom staff and it remains to be seen whether the FAW will meet those assurances,

And Coleman - who saw his side denied victory in the third minute of stoppage time when Armando Cooper cancelled out Tom Lawrence's excellent strike - admitted he did not know what the future holds.

"It's a funny one because I don't know what's going to happen," Coleman said. "I hope that's not going to be the last game.

"I think I am the man to lead them but it is a bit more to it than that. I told the players that if this is my last experience with them, they have been a pleasure. We have been through a lot.

"We needed to get this camp out of the way. Of course it is public, my situation.

"So I hope it is resolved sooner rather than later - and I think talks will start this week."

Wales fans left the FAW hierarchy in no doubt as to what they want to happen.

They showed their support for Coleman from the first minute as they urged the man who guided them to the semi-finals of Euro 2016 to stay.

"A huge, huge thank you to them - I appreciated them singing my name," Coleman said.

"These are our core fans. These are the fans that in the first 12 to 18 months, in my experience here, didn't like me much!

"But I didn't mind because they were the only fans that showed up for us - 9,000-10,000 people.

"I didn't mind them booing because at least they paid the money to come and support their country and they're still doing it."

Wales gave first starts to Ben Woodburn, Ethan Ampadu and David Brooks, as well as handing debuts to substitutes Tom Lockyer, Lee Evans, Ryan Hedges and Marley Watkins.

Coleman was rewarded with a zestful performance and - after Sam Vokes had seen his penalty saved at the end of the first half - Lawrence put Wales ahead in the 75th minute when he cut in from the left.

But World Cup finalists Panama saved themselves in the dying seconds when Cooper was slipped through to finish unerringly.

"The players are an incredible bunch and they'll keep achieving because they are all at a good age" Coleman said.

"I think there's still a little hangover because we never got to the play-offs and we're not going to Russia.

"That will burn for a while that, we're all still hurting over that - but that will subside and we will move on."

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