Wales embrace Euro 2016 pressure

2015-10-06 16:19
Gareth Bale in action for Wales (File)

London - Gareth Bale says that Wales' players are embracing the sense of expectation around the team as they look to reach a major tournament for the first time in 57 years.

Wales tackle Bosnia-Herzegovina in Zenica on Saturday needing just one point to qualify for next year's European Championship in France, having not graced a major competition since the 1958 World Cup.

They then close their qualifying campaign by hosting part-timers Andorra, meaning they have a significant margin of error, and Bale says the Welsh camp is abuzz with the prospect of securing qualification.

"We're close to achieving something that no other team has ever before and we're all excited by that," said the Real Madrid forward, whose country have never played at a European Championship finals.

"This is the best kind of pressure to have and we want to embrace that. We know what we have at stake, but we're keeping calm and we know what we have to do.

"We're only focussed on Bosnia, not Andorra, and we want to get the job done as soon as possible."

Bale, 26, returned from a three-week lay-off with a calf injury in Real's 1-1 draw with Atletico Madrid at the weekend and says that he felt no ill-effects.

"The calf is OK," he told reporters on Monday after being named Welsh Player of the Year for a record fifth time.

"It was a nice 20 minutes to open it up and get the legs going ready for the next two games. I've prepared well for the last couple of weeks doing my rehab. I'm ready to go."

Read more on:    wales  |  euro 2016  |  gareth bale  |  soccer

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