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Page last updated at 07:09 GMT, Thursday, 2 April 2009 08:09 UK

Wales deny Koumas retirement talk

Jason Koumas
Koumas' Wales career has been hampered by injuries

Wales have denied reports that Jason Koumas has retired from international football.

The Wigan midfielder, 29, pulled out ahead of Wednesday's 2-0 defeat to Germany with a hip injury.

And there was mounting speculation that Koumas was considering walking away from the national team.

But FAW spokesman: Ceri Stennett said: "Jason did have a private discussion with [boss] John Toshack but he has not retired from international football."

Wrexham-born Koumas, capped 33 times by Wales with 10 goals, did feature in the 2-0 defeat to Finland on Saturday.

But he was known to be unhappy about a persistent hip injury that has restricted his movement on the pitch, and over remarks aimed at him by Toshack and midfielder Simon Davies ahead of that game.

Following Wales second defeat in five days at the hands of Germany, Toshack admitted that there were "issues that needed to be resolved" in his young side.

And one of them could be the future of Koumas, who made his Wales debut in a 1-1 draw against Ukraine in a World Cup qualifier in June 2001.

Koumas' international career has been hampered by a number of injuries.


Should he hang up his international boots, Koumas would be the latest senior member of the squad to quit under Toshack.

Toronto midfielder Carl Robinson announced his retirement on Wednesday and joins the likes of Ryan Giggs, John Hartson, Robbie Savage and Paul Parry.

Toshack is in the process of overhauling the national team.

That saw Arsenal's 18-year-old Aaron Ramsey make his full debut against Germany, while Wales can call on other youthful midfielders such as Joe Ledley and Jack Collison.

Wales have also played down speculation over captain Craig Bellamy's absence from the Germany defeat due to a knee injury.

Bellamy was sent back to his club, Manchester City, and Stennett denied the absence was anything to do with the weekend TV outburst from Bellamy over Wales' chances of qualifying for South Africa 2010, following the defeat to Finland.

In it, he said: "You've probably seen two poor sides trying to contest this group and none have a glimmer of hope of qualifying.

"That is fact on what I have just seen today against Finland. Where do we go from here? God knows."

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see also
Wales 0-2 Germany
01 Apr 09 |  Internationals
Toshack rues Germany defeat
01 Apr 09 |  Internationals
Wales future secure - Robinson
01 Apr 09 |  Internationals
Referee decisions get Toshack ire
01 Apr 09 |  Internationals
Robinson takes Wales retirement
01 Apr 09 |  Internationals
BBC Sport Wales coverage
03 Oct 11 |  Wales

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