Gary Speed: Late former manager always in Wales' thoughts, says Joe Allen

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Gary Speed won 85 caps for Wales, before he went on to manage his own country.

World Cup 2022 qualification: Wales v Belarus Venue, Cardiff City Stadium Date and Time: Saturday 13 November Kick-off at 19:45 GMT. Coverage: Live commentary via BBC Radio Wales and Radio Cymru. Plus, live score updates and text on the BBC Sport app and website.

Joe Allen believes that Wales will remember Gary Speed as their former manager when they attempt to qualify for the first World Cup since 1958.

Friday marks 10 years since Speed was appointed to Wales' final match, which was a victory over Norway just 15 days prior to his death.

Allen, 31 years old, is one of many current squad members who have played under Speed.

It's hard to believe that it's been ten years. Allen said that many of the young players still speak about Gary and the impact he had on them as they were playing.

"He has restructured many things, not only on the pitch, but also off it and we have reaped the benefits of that.

"That's why Welsh football has been so healthy over the past decade.

Speed's time as Wales' national team coach lasted only a year. However, his impact was immense.

Speed, a former captain of his nation with extensive playing experience in Premier League football, instilled professionalism and developed Wales' playing style.

His leadership saw the team rise from their lowest Fifa world ranking, 117th in August 2011, to 45th within a matter of two months. In December, just weeks after Speed's passing, Wales was named the 'Best Movers' for the year, having received more ranking points than any other country that year.

Speed didn't live to see all of the results, but notable players from Wales such as Gareth Bale or Aaron Ramsey could credit their success in qualifying for the first major tournament in 58 years, Euro 2016. They also reached the semi-finals. Speed was not there to witness the final result of his efforts.

Wales built on these foundations and qualified for Euro 2020, their third major finals appearance in history.

Their main goal is to compete at the World Cup. Two games remain in Wales' regular qualifying campaign in Qatar for the 2022 tournament. They begin Saturday's match against Belarus at home.

March's playoffs seem to be Wales' most likely route to a first World Cup since 1958. Speed's legacy is still a source for inspiration 10 years after his death.

"Of course. Allen stated, "He'll always remain in our thoughts."

"He was part the beginning of our journey, first for Euro 2016 and all that has followed."

Gary Speed was a player for Leeds United, Everton and Newcastle as well as Sheffield United.

"I try to recall when he smiled,"

Wayne Hennessey is a teammate of Allen and he shares his views. He also played under Speed. He went on to help Wales reach Euro 2016 semi-finals. He remains in the squad.

Hennessey said, "He was an important part of the journey."

He was a great football player, and everyone knew that. He was a good player for Wales, but he took a new path when he was appointed manager.

"He switched to different formations, and we started different stuff off of the field.

"He brought in many different staff, and we were moving in the right direction." It was very sad to hear this news. It still makes me feel a little choked.

"I try to recall when he smiled and saw me on the sidelines. He was a great leader and could speak so well.

"I believe that that was the beginning of the path that led us to where we are today.

"For the older boys, we will certainly appreciate that and all the work he did." It is so sad that he will be missed.