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Ashley Williams says coaching would be a natural progression after choosing to retire from football

"I’m doing my coaching badges at the minute and football is what I’ve known all my life so that would be a natural progression"; former Swansea, Everton, Stoke and Bristol City defender has retired from football after 20-year career

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Former Swansea, Everton, Stoke, Bristol City and Wales defender Ashley Williams says he would consider becoming a manager after deciding to retire from playing football

Former Wales captain Ashley Williams says a move into management would be a "natural progression" after announcing his retirement from playing football.

The 36-year-old ended a 20 year on-field career on Tuesday having made 741 career appearances, including 86 international caps.

Now, the former Hednesford Town, Stockport County, Swansea City, Everton, Stoke City and Bristol City defender is considering a switch into management.

"I'm doing my coaching badges at the minute and football is what I've known all my life so that'd be a natural progression," said Williams.

"Just being in and around football, whether that's doing media on the TV or coaching and trying to pass on some of the experience that I learned to the younger generation."

Williams helped guide Swansea to their League Cup triumph in 2013.
Image: Williams helped guide Swansea to their League Cup triumph in 2013

Williams has admitted he did have the chance to continue playing, but decided the time was right to announce his retirement.

"It was difficult, it's all I've known since I was six years old playing football. It was something that I had to think about but the timing was right," he said.

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"I had a few offers and things to go over, but for me and where I am in my life and what I achieved in my career which was way more than I ever expected, I thought the time was probably correct to do it right now."

After starting his career in non-League, Williams went onto move up through the leagues eventually captaining Swansea to promotion to the Premier League as well as Wales to the semi-finals of Euro 2016 - two moments he says are his playing highlights.

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Williams said: "The playoff final win for Swansea against Reading - just all my dreams come true to play in the Premier League. And the goal against Belgium for obvious reasons in the Euros.

"I think you can see in the celebrations and my face it was a massive moment for me and the whole country really."

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