Ryan Giggs happy for Gareth Bale mania to take limelight before his Wales bow

• Giggs takes charge of first Wales game against China on Thursday
• Fans expected to flock to Nanning to see Real Madrid star

Ryan Giggs takes charge of his first Wales game on Thursday but believes the spotlight has been taken off him in China by Gareth Bale.

The Real Madrid forward made a 7,500‑mile dash to Nanning on Monday to be part of Giggs’s squad to face the hosts in the opening game of the China Cup. Bale is set to be involved, probably as a substitute, with fans from across China expected to travel to Nanning’s 60,000-capacity stadium to see him.

“It’s my first game and I want to get my best team out there,” Giggs said. “Gareth obviously gives everyone a massive lift and he is used to the spotlight. It was the same when David Beckham came into the United team – he took the limelight away from me.”

Giggs said players such as Bale were “treated like gods” in the Far East but that he would carefully consider how to use the 28‑year‑old. “It’s an important part of the season and I won’t be taking any stupid risks,” the manager said.

It is understood Wales will avoid a fine in the region of £100,000 if Bale plays. Giggs, asked if his side were under commercial and financial pressure to use him, said: “Yes, of course.”

Giggs has said he will be more nervous than at any time during his playing career. “I never really got nervous as a player but I will be much more nervous tomorrow. As a player you want a little bit of nerves but generally speaking I never really got nervous. Coaching and management is completely different.

“As a player you are quite selfish and you are just making sure you are doing your job in the team. As a manager there are so many things to think about that are constantly going through your mind.

“It’s a case of: ‘Have you forgotten anything? What could be improved?’ It’s about preparing the team as best you can with your staff also. Afterwards it is just evaluating, seeing what you could have done better, and seeing what we did well.”

Ashley Williams, who is set to continue as captain despite a poor season at Everton, has said he contemplated retiring from internationals after Wales failed to qualify for the World Cup. Chris Gunter will become Wales’ most capped outfield player with 86 should he be involved. Wales play Uruguay or the Czech Republic on Monday

Alex Bywater in Nanning

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