John Toshack’s future as Wales manager is uncertain as unconfirmed reports began to circulate claiming he was willing to quit.
There was no official word from the Football Association of Wales to validate the rumours, but the 61-year-old’s position has been under increased scrutiny since Friday’s Euro 2012 qualifying loss in Montenegro.
That result, even just one game into the qualifying campaign, has placed huge emphasis on next month’s home clash with Bulgaria.
Toshack even admitted his side might not “have too much chance” of qualifying for the tournament if they do not beat a side thrashed 4-0 by England.
Those comments contrasted with Toshack’s prior to the game, in which he spoke glowingly of his maturing group of young players.
Toshack has overseen a huge transition in almost six years at the Welsh helm, with a number of senior players being replaced by promising youngsters.
There was a feeling his youthful team was ready to come of age but Friday’s loss in Podgorica has turned up the heat on the former Real Madrid boss.
His most notorious critic, Robbie Savage, was one of the first to demand a change at the helm.
Savage infamously quit international football after a row with Toshack five years ago, and there is no love lost between the pair, but his comments nevertheless fuelled debate.
The Derby midfielder said on BBC Radio Five Live: “It is time John Toshack left Wales.
“I think we need a fresh start, fresh impetus. We need to get the crowds back and I think Toshack has to go.
“He has made enough excuses, he has been in the job six years. Judge him on his qualifying campaigns – they haven’t qualified yet and they have got off to a terrible start again.”
The players have tried to remain positive despite the disappointing 1-0 loss in Montenegro.
Wales, as they are in a five-team group, do not play again this week.
They return to action with back-to-back fixtures against Bulgaria and Switzerland next month before facing group favourites England in March.
“It was a massive disappointment but it’s one of those things,” said winger Gareth Bale.
“Hopefully, though, we can win the next game. We have to pick ourselves up now.
“The Bulgaria game is next month and the sooner the better. We’ll be ready and prepared and we’ll take that as it comes.”