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Gary Speed's son made moving speech to Wales players after Costa Rica defeat


Craig Bellamy (centre) with Gary Speed's sons Ed and Tom

Craig Bellamy (centre) with Gary Speed's sons Ed and Tom

Craig Bellamy (centre) with Gary Speed's sons Ed and Tom

A TEARFUL Chris Coleman revealed Gary Speed's son Ed offered words of support to his players following their 1-0 defeat by Costa Rica in the match dedicated to the memory of the former Wales manager.

On an emotional night in Cardiff there were numerous tributes to Speed, who died in November, as the principality remembered one of its favourite sporting figures.

Prior to kick-off there were performances from several Welsh artists, while Speed's sons Ed and Tom led the side out along with captain for the night Craig Bellamy and injured skipper Aaron Ramsey.

At one end of the ground cards were held aloft to reveal the name 'Gary' on the background of a Welsh flag as the anthem was played with a solemn Bellamy arm in arm with his late friend's sons, while a minute's applause was also held in honour of Speed and two spontaneous standing ovations took place during the 90 minutes.

Wales, who were without the injured Ramsey and Gareth Bale, could not secure the victory they and their supporters so desperately wanted as Joel Campbell's cool seventh-minute finish from Bryan Ruiz's pass was enough to give Costa Rica, the opponents when Speed won the first of his 85 caps in 1990, the win.

But an emotional Coleman revealed Ed Speed had addressed his squad in the dressing room after the match.

He said: ''Ed and Tom, what a credit to Gary they are. Ed has come into the dressing room after the game and he gave a speech which anybody would have been proud of. There was not a tear in his eyes, he was strong as an ox.

''He came in and he said, 'My Dad always said to me that if you do your best it's enough, and I think you lot did your best tonight'.

''What do you say to that from a 14-year-old who has just lost his Dad? That's bravery, isn't it?''

Bellamy has previously said that this fixture could be his final cap, and he was given a warm ovation by the 23,000 crowd when he was replaced by Rob Earnshaw after 74 minutes.

But he has yet to formally announce whether he will play on or not, and Coleman reiterated his hope that Bellamy will play on for the Dragons.

''It's part of the job, I'm not complaining. There are only two outcomes, he will stay on or he won't,'' he said.

''He wants to win and he has been a superb servant. I see a maturity about him I never saw in him before.

''When he is ready he will come out and say, he is his own man, I can't make him. I hope he makes the right decision.''