Wales captain Gary Speed retired from playing international football in the wake of his country's 3-2 defeat by Poland on Wednesday.
"I'm finished. That's me. The time is right," said the 35-year-old Bolton midfielder, after winning his 85th cap.
Speed went on: "It looks difficult for us to qualify now and it would be wrong for me to carry on.
"It's time to get someone younger in for the next campaign. I have had a great career and loved every minute."
Speed has been linked with the Wales manager's job with Mark Hughes having left to join Blackburn.
He insisted he will not apply for the post but said he would "talk to the FA of Wales if they approached me".
Speed has two years left on his contract with Bolton and has been urged to concentrate on seeing out his playing career by manager Sam Allardyce.
But Mark Hughes, after bringing to an end a 21-year career with Wales as player and manager, said Speed "has the right qualities to be manager of Wales".
Midfielder Robbie Savage reiterated his belief that Speed should be appointed, in tandem with the experienced Brian Flynn.
"Gary and Brian Flynn should be given the job - everybody in the squad wants Gary to take over," he said.