Shock revelations that Welsh soccer ace Ryan Giggs is planning to announce his retirement from International football later on today, have been massively overshadowed by a raging debate over the wingers International career.
Giggs 33, who made his welsh officials aware of his feelings last week, declaring that he intends to end his career for his country, of which he has played for the past 16 years, is thought to be playing his final 90 minutes of International football against the Czech Republic on Saturday. The decision has been made in favour of prolonging his career at Manchester United, Although it hasn't been confirmed as the reason for the Midfielders decision it is clear that the move to focus on the needs of your club, is often a wise choice as has been previously been proven in the case of sporting colleagues Paul Scholes and Alan Shearer who both chose to end their International career before their time for the benefit of their clubs.
It was feared that maybe that decision wouldn't be taken kindly by officials due to the prominent status that Giggs has clearly had in the Welsh squad, but despite the initial shock the Welsh Football Association have since released a statement to "Express on record their gratitude for the 16 years of service that Giggs gave to his country in the 64 International games in which he played" He has also been praised by fans and officials alike who have all pledged their thanks and appreciation for his time at the club along with messages of support for the future.
However such kind remarks have been undeniably marred by huge speculation resurrecting previously rubbished claims that The Red could have in fact chosen a different International path and that Giggs - known as the Welsh Wizard by his united faithful - supposedly snubbed a career for England, in favour of his donning the colours of his homeland.
Speculation is thought to have been initially sparked by the fact that a young Giggs started his International career not in Wales but in fact for England schoolboys, for which not only did he play, but he was placed in the integral role of captain. Which has led some pundits to believe that this early recognition would have made the winger eligible to play for England when his senior International Career took off years later?
This has seemingly led certain football pundits and rival fans alike have to resent the accomplished Reds Star, for the decision that not only do they feel has been to the detriment of the English squad, But has also led them to criticise the level of commitment shown to Wales by insinuating that he favoured playing for his club over his country. [There had previously in his career been allegations that Giggs, supported by his united manager suspiciously developed "minor injuries" before an International friendly that ruled him out, but then were quickly dealt with in time to play for his club]; these accusations have since been rubbished by Giggs and his long-term manger Sir Alex Ferguson. Giggs stated "He [Sir Alex] would never stop me playing for my country"
So, to clarify the situation yes indeed Ryan did play for a different national team at a junior level but the way the club was regulated stated that the only thing needed to validate his place in the team was that he was educated in an English school, hence the name of the squad - and that his team mates included both Irish and Scottish youngsters.
It has been mentioned that "Naturalisation" and "Dual Citizenship" are contributing factors that would have made the Welshman eligible to play for England but this is not factually correct, as naturalisation doesn't apply between UK countries and Dual Citizenship requires that a member of the applicant's immediate family must have been born there.
Neither of these were the case in this situation so these claims have simply no substance.
It seems a shame that Giggs decision to step down from the International stage can be overshadowed in such a way that seems to deny the midfielder the praise that is due.
The undeniable impact that the Welsh winger has had on the game can be seen at both International and domestic level, which spans back almost two decades.
Just a few of his accolades including a record number of 23 trophies -more than any other premiership player - including a massive Nine league titles and the greatly coveted Treble that United clinched back in 1999.
Who knows how many times in the rest of his career these frankly ludicrous accusations will resurface but the Welshman was determined to put a stop to the media circus when he angrily declared "I would rather go through the whole of my International career, without taking part in any major competition rather than play for a country to which I wasn't born and there is No family connection"
Ryan Giggs is WELSH, is proud of his heritage and has never expressed any interest in playing for any other country nor would he wish to do so.