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Gareth Bale is BACK in the Welsh World Cup qualifying double against Belarus and Belgium

Gareth Bale is BACK in Wales ‘crucial double World Cup qualifying match against Belarus and Belgium after recovering from a hamstring injury … and insists he is’ really looking forward to going ” when he finally prepares to win his 100th match

  • Gareth Bale has not played since September 8 after suffering a torn hamstring
  • Wales coach Robert Page named the 32-year-old captain to a 28-man squad
  • The Dragons face Belarus and Belgium this month in crucial World Cup qualifiers
  • Aaron Ramsey could also be available, but will miss the Juventus game on Tuesday


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Gareth Bale is “really looking forward to going” and on track to win his 100th international match after being named to the Wales squad for the World Cup qualifiers with Belarus and Belgium.

Real Madrid forward Bale has not played since September 8 after suffering what Welsh coach Robert Page described as a “major hamstring tear”.

But Real coach Carlo Ancelotti says Bale could be involved in Saturday’s LaLiga clash with Rayo Vallecano and Page has named the 32-year-old captain in a 28-man squad for Wales’ vital double-game this month. .

Bale would become the second Welshman to reach the 100 caps milestone after teammate Chris Gunter, who accomplished the feat in March.

Gareth Bale (left) is ready for his 100th game as he enters the Wales squad upon returning from injury

Gareth Bale (left) is ready for his 100th game as he enters the Wales squad upon returning from injury

Bale has been out of action since early September after sustaining a hamstring injury.

Bale has been out of action since early September after sustaining a hamstring injury.

Bale has been out of action since early September after sustaining a hamstring injury.

Gareth is in a good place. It’s exactly where we and the medical team think it should be, ” Page said.

‘I spoke to him on Saturday and he’s looking forward to going. He’s back on the grass and he’s doing absolutely everything he can to get 100% fit.

“He’s not training full time yet, but we have another week and where we want him to be.”

Bale was on the scoreboard against Levante before scoring a hat-trick in Wales’ 3-2 World Cup qualifying win against Belarus.

Bale spent last season on loan at Tottenham and was a regular starter at Real Madrid after Ancelotti’s return to Madrid.

Gareth Bale could return to action in LaLiga's clash with Rayo Vallecano before the break

Gareth Bale could return to action in LaLiga's clash with Rayo Vallecano before the break

Bale could return to action in Real’s LaLiga clash with Rayo Vallecano before Wales’ turn

Carlo Ancelotti said Bale could be involved in Saturday's LaLiga clash with Rayo Vallecano

Carlo Ancelotti said Bale could be involved in Saturday's LaLiga clash with Rayo Vallecano

Carlo Ancelotti said Bale could be involved in Saturday’s LaLiga clash with Rayo Vallecano

But their last game was Wales’ goalless draw with Estonia almost two months ago and Real have been careful in managing their recovery.

Page said: ‘If we have to adhere to a plan that they want to implement, we would be prepared to do so because we want Gareth as part of the team.

He has a good relationship with the coach and the medical team there, and so do we. You have to have conversations and it’s about trusting each other. ‘

Wales manager Robert Page said he did not see why Real Madrid would prevent Bale from joining the team.

Wales manager Robert Page said he did not see why Real Madrid would prevent Bale from joining the team.

Wales manager Robert Page said he did not see why Real Madrid would prevent Bale from joining the team.

When asked if Real would prevent Bale from joining the Wales team, Page said: ‘If he is declared fit, I don’t see why they wouldn’t. They have supported me a lot.

“ If there is a problem, I think it will come from maybe Gareth pushing himself too hard and taking a slight bump.

But he has too much experience to do such a thing. I don’t think the fact that Gareth doesn’t play has an impact on my team’s selection for the Belarus game.

He’s a fit kid who doesn’t take half of himself very well. I know it’s not the same as playing games, but when you have someone like Gareth Bale coming back to the team, they’ll be considered a starter. ‘

Wales will likely need four points from their last two qualifying matches to finish second in Group E and secure a place in the World Cup play-offs.

The Dragons are almost certainly guaranteed a play-off spot anyway due to their success in the Nations League and Page is also confident that Juventus midfielder Aaron Ramsey will be available.

Ramsey has played just six minutes for his club since opening Wales playoffs in the Czech Republic and Estonia last month and will miss Juventus’ Champions League tie on Tuesday due to muscle fatigue.

Page said: “ He’s learning to manage his body as he gets closer to 30, he can’t do what he did when he was 20 years old.

“ He identified there was quite a bit of muscle fatigue and he released himself, which is sensible.

Aaron Ramsey will be available after paying more minutes per country than per club this season

Aaron Ramsey will be available after paying more minutes per country than per club this season

Aaron Ramsey will be available after paying more minutes per country than per club this season

‘Aaron probably would have struggled five years ago and collapsed.

Glad to see that. He did it before the last camp and he was with us. I don’t see any change in that mindset for this camp. ‘

Page spoke for the first time since the announcement that Bournemouth forward David Brooks has been diagnosed with stage two Hodgkin lymphoma.

Brooks withdrew from the October World Cup qualifiers against the Czech Republic and Estonia after the Welsh Football Association medical team detected his illness.

“I think when you’ve worked with a player for as long as me, the doctor and Shaun, you know and you can see little differences,” Page said.

He didn’t look good and he wasn’t himself. I can’t speak highly enough of the medical team. ‘

Ben Cabango and Will Vaulks have replaced Tom Lockyer and Matt Smith from the originally named team last month.

TEAM OF WALES

Wayne Hennessey, Adam Davies, Danny Ward.

Chris Gunter, Ben Davies, Connor Roberts, Chris Mepham, Joe Rodon, Neco Williams, James Lawrence, Rhys Norrington-Davies, Ben Cabango.

Joe Allen, Ethan Ampadu, Joe Morrell, Dylan Levitt, Will Vaulks.

Aaron Ramsey, Jonny Williams, Harry Wilson, Sorba Thomas, Gareth Bale, Daniel James, Kieffer Moore, Tyler Roberts, Brennan Johnson, Rubin Colwill, Mark Harris.

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