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Page appears to write off Wales’ chances of reaching knockout stages after World Cup loss to Iran

26 Nov 2022 2 minute read
Wales manager Rob Page (left) and Chris Mepham applaud the fans after the defat to Iran. Photo Nick Potts PA Images

Phil Blanche

Wales are clinging on to a World Cup lifeline as they bid to reach the knockout stages – even though boss Robert Page appeared to write off their hopes after losing 2-0 to Iran.

England’s goalless draw with the United States on Friday night means that Wales still have a path to the round of 16.

Wales must beat England on Tuesday – something they have not achieved since 1984 – at Doha’s Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium and hope Iran and the United States draw their final group game.

That would see Wales finish behind England and above Iran in second spot on goal difference, the first deciding factor for teams level on points at this World Cup.

Beating England by anything less than a four-goal margin would not be enough for Wales should either Iran or USA win that final game.

Wales, however, would finish above England and claim a round of 16 spot by beating Gareth Southgate’s side by four goals.

England have never lost to Wales by four goals in the 143-year history of the fixture.

Not confident

Page was clearly not confident about progressing to the knockout stages after Iran struck twice in stoppage time, saying: “We want to finish the competition on a high.

“It’s out of our hands for going through, but we want to finish with a good performance and a win.

“We’re low at the moment, but we’ll get them back up for a tough game to finish with.

“We can’t sit and cry about it. Thankfully the game is just around the corner.

“We can go back out and give our supporters something to cheer about.

“They’ve shown a massive commitment to come out.

“We’ll bounce back, we’ll pick them up and we’ll go again.”

England top Group B heading into the final game and know progress is assured so long as they avoid a 4-0 loss on Tuesday.

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Fi yn unig
Fi yn unig
1 year ago

I’m glad to hear this from Rob Page. Throw of the shackles of trying to tactically qualify and swashbuckle away peppering Englands’ goal with shots from everywhere. Please don’t leave Qatar having only scored a Gareth Bale penalty.

1 year ago
Reply to  Fi yn unig

We’ll have to depend on a US-Iran draw earlier in the day. If that goes differently, we can try to aim for a 2018 South Korea-Germany game.

Dai Rob
Dai Rob
1 year ago

We are in the world cup. First time since I was born (in the seventies).
Let’s enjoy it. Diolch Rob boi!

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