Ryan Giggs explains Aaron Ramsey's omission from Wales squad for China Cup
By Matthew Treadwell
Last Updated: 15/03/18 4:32pm
Wales manager Ryan Giggs has spoken of the decision to omit Arsenal midfielder Aaron Ramsey from his first international squad as he prepares to take his players to China.
Ramsey will play for Arsenal against AC Milan in the Europa League on Thursday night before undergoing treatment on what Giggs described, when pushed, as a "private matter".
He was able to name Gareth Bale in his squad, however, with a number of other players able to travel to the China Cup despite Giggs acknowledging it is a key time of the season for them and their clubs.
"It's just a small medical procedure that we feel, in this window, he can get done," Giggs said of Ramsey. "Hopefully he can get through tonight [Thursday] and contribute to Arsenal.
"Gareth [Bale] is our best player, you want him there and he is a brilliant player.
"He has a game at the weekend [Real Madrid v Girona] and if he comes through that, he will be on the plane.
"It's an important stage of the season where players and teams are going for promotion, fighting against relegation, and I want them to come away.
"There is constant dialogue with players who have got knocks on whether it is better to stay at home, like Aaron [Ramsey] and like [David] Brooks."
Ramsey out of Giggs' first Wales squad
Aaron Ramsey out of Ryan Giggs' first Wales squad but Gareth Bale is included
Giggs also confirmed Everton centre-back Ashley Williams will remain as Wales captain, although he admitted the 33-year-old is coming to the end of his playing career, leaving him a decision to make on the captaincy in the future.
"Ashley is still the captain, I don't see any reason to change," added Giggs. "A couple of weeks ago I had a meeting with all the staff up in Manchester to get to know each other, for me to get to know them, and Ashley came along.
"He has been a brilliant servant, both as a player and as captain, so there's no reason to change.
"Obviously he is getting on in his career, so that's something I will have to look at in the near future."
As for the trip to China, Giggs believes it will be a good opportunity for his players to test themselves in unfamiliar conditions.
"It's a great adventure - not many players will have been to China," he added. "I have on many occasions and the fans are fanatical, so it will be a great trip.
"The timing for certain clubs is difficult but it gives me and the staff the opportunity to see players that we have not seen before close at hand and it is a tournament which is going to be competitive."