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    4 WALES NATIONAL TEAM ICONS

    Wales' 4 Icons
    4 Icons Who Elevated Wales Global Reputation in the Football World
     

    Wales is a small country in terms of population. However, football fans and bettors who like to explore sites like Lottoland Football in pursuit of better odds will tell you Wales is big when it comes to football and rugby.

    In fact, Wales is the third oldest international football team, after England and Scotland.
    That said, here are 3 Welsh talents who elevated Welsh football's global reputation, leaving an indelible mark on the beautiful game.

    1.    Gareth Bale
    Born in 1989, Gareth Bale is among the footballing icons who have put Wales on the international map. He holds a record of 111 caps and 41 international goals for the Welsh national team. His career started in 2006 when he became the youngest player to represent Wales National Football Team at the time.
    In 2013, Real Madrid acquired Bale for a record fee of £85.1 million to play alongside Christiano Ronaldo and Karim Benzema. He had a fruitful run at Real Madrid, having helped the club win the Champions League title and the Cop Del Rey.
    In the International arena, the winger led Wales to the 2016 Euro campaign, where he found the back of the net seven times.
    He's also been named Welsh Footballer of the Year 6 times, claiming the same award four times on the trot (2013 to 2016).
    Besides, he helped Wales qualify for the World Cup in 2022, ending their 64-year World Cup dry spell.
    Speed, agility, and aerial ability made Bale the best winger of his generation. Here are some of his achievements:
    ●    7 times Footballer of the Year
    ●    5 Champions League titles
    ●    1 English League Cup winner
    ●    1 UEFA Super Cup title
    ●    4 Fifa Club World Cup titles
    ●    3 times Spanish Champion
    ●    1 MLS Cup title
    ●    1 time Supporters' Shield Winner (at Los Angeles FC).

    2.    Ryan Giggs
    Ryan Giggs is Another icon who has done well for Welsh football and himself. First, Giggs co-owns Salford City and has continued his football career as a coach, representing Welsh football on the global stage.
    Giggs joined Manchester United in 1991 and is one of the most decorated Manchester United players, having spent his entire football career at Old Trafford.
    Internationally, Giggs has represented Great Britain as the captain in the 2022 Summer Olympics. Besides, he's the record holder of the most assists in Premier League history.
    Among his major achievements include:
    ●    13 Premier League winner's medals, more than any player in history.
    ●    9 FA Community Shield winner's medals.
    ●    3 League Cup winner's medals.
    ●    2 Champions League winner's medals.  
    ●    4 FA Cup winner's medals.
    ●    1 Intercontinental Cup winner's medal.  
    ●    1 Fifa Club World Cup winner's medal.
    ●    1 UEFA Super Cup winner's medal.
    ●    2 consecutive PFA Young Player of the Year awards (1992 and 1993).

    3.    Ian Rush
    Rush Played as a forward for the Welsh National team and Liverpool. His career in the Welsh national team spanned over 15 years, where he was a regular starter.
    Although he never played in the World Cup, Rush is Wales's second-highest goalscorer with 28 goals in 78 appearances.
    The foward had a successful club career at Liverpool and Juventus. He is currently Liverpool's all-time goalscorer with 346 goals and boasts a record of 25 derby goals against Liverpool Merseyside rivals Everton.
    Some of his major achievements are:
    ●    Five times English Champion.
    ●    Five English League Cup titles.
    ●    Two European Champion Clubs' Cup titles.
    ●    Two times Footballer of the Year.
    ●    Three times English FA Cup winner.
    ●    Four times English Super Cup winner.

    4.    Mark Hughes
    Hughes is among the most decorated players both in Wales and at club level. After hanging his boots in 2002, Hughes continued his football career as a coach.
    He has managed the Wales National Team for five years, although he never qualified for the European Championship or the World Cup. He has also managed Blackburn, Manchester City, QPR, Stoke City, and Southampton.
    During his playing days, he scored 16 goals in 72 appearances for Wales. His most notable club career is at Manchester United, where he spent two spells and acquired most of his honours.
    Other clubs Hughes has played for include Chelsea, Barcelona, Southampton, Bayern Munich, Blackburn Rovers, and Everton.
    Let's take a look at Hughes' title record as a player.
    ●    2 times English Champion
    ●    2 times Footballer of the Year
    ●    1 UEFA Super Cup winner
    ●    4 times English FA Cup winner
    ●    2 times English Champion
    ●    5 times English Super Cup Winner
    ●    2 times Europapokal der Pokalsieger Sieger(European Cup Winners' Cup Winner)
    ●    2 times English Cup winner
    ●    1 German Super Cup winner

    Final Word
    The icons named above have enjoyed both their country and club careers, leaving an indelible mark in the football world. They have continued to inspire emerging Welsh footballers poised to take the football scene by storm.  

    [ Main photo embedded from FAW Cymru ]

    Posted: Thursday 24th August 2023
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