Aaron Ramsey will captain Wales for the upcoming Euro 2024 qualifiers, taking over from Gareth Bale, with Ben Davies appointed the role of vice-captain.
In January, Gareth Bale, the all-time leading scorer and appearance-maker for the Wales men’s team, announced his retirement from football.
For the upcoming Euro 2024 qualifiers against Croatia and Latvia, Wales manager Rob Page has included four players who have yet to earn their first caps: Jordan James, Nathan Broadhead, Ollie Cooper, and 17-year-old Luke Harris.
Additionally, Tom Bradshaw, in impressive form as a striker for Millwall, has been called up for the first time in five years.
Aaron Ramsey, the most-capped outfield player in the squad and currently playing for Nice, is fit and available for selection. According to Page, Ramsey is the obvious choice to succeed Gareth Bale as Wales’ new captain.
“Aaron was vice-captain behind Gareth and to me it’s the natural progression,” Page said.
“While we’ve still got someone of his quality in the squad it was the natural decision.
“Aaron took it hard after the World Cup like we all did. But there was no doubt whatsoever about his future and wanting to play for Wales.”
According to Page, the decision to select Aaron Ramsey as Wales’ new captain was a difficult one, as it was a close call with Tottenham defender Davies, who will now serve as the team’s vice-captain.
“I see Ben Davies as a captain of the future and his role will be similar to that of Gareth and Aaron.”
Page commented on the oddity of announcing a Wales squad without their longstanding star player, Bale, who recently retired from football. However, he reassured that he anticipates Bale to stay engaged with the team.
“We will meet and have discussions, he is still interested. It’s been a big decision for him to make,” said Page.
“He still wants to be involved in whatever capacity it is – as long as I’m here I’d like Gareth to be a part of it. We appreciate his value and what he can offer.
“It’s strange. Gareth was an unbelievable servant and player and he will be missed.”