Gary Speed confirmed as new Wales manager

Gary Speed was confirmed as the new manager of Wales this afternoon. The 41-year-old will step down as manager of Sheffield United with immediate effect after agreeing terms with the Football Association of Wales to replace John Toshack.

The former Leeds United midfielder was officially unveiled in a press conference at the Vale of Glamorgan hotel at 2pm after beating off competition from Chris Coleman, John Hartson, Brian Flynn and former Sweden manager Lars Legerback.

Despite his limited managerial experience, the FAW moved swiftly to appoint Speed after it became clear that former Welsh international was interested in managing his country.

Speed replaced Kevin Blackwell at Sheffield United in August after the latter was sacked just three games into the season, but The Blades have lost 18 matches since the 41-year-old took charge.

Wales play the Republic of Ireland in a friendly match in February before taking on England at the Millennium Stadium in March in a Euro 2012 qualifier.

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