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Under-pressure boss say Wales are a team in transition

18 Jun 2023 3 minute read
Wales manager Rob Page. Photo Nick Potts / PA Wire.

Rob Page has defended Wales’ dismal record over the past 12 months by insisting his side are a team in transition.

Page signed a four-year contract in September but has come under increasing pressure after a dreadful run of one win in 11 games since qualifying for the 2022 World Cup.

Wales fans’ frustration came to a head in Friday’s shock 4-2 defeat to Armenia, opponents ranked 97th in the world, as hopes of qualifying for next summer’s Euro 2024 finals in Germany were seriously damaged.

“We had a group meeting (on Saturday) and addressed what needed to be said,” Page said ahead of Monday’s crunch qualifier against Turkey in Samsun.

“We’ve put it to bed and full focus is on the challenge here and we’ll all be ready for it.

“What I want is a reaction from the players, and that is in the performance. If they do that the result will take care of itself.

“We’re a team in progression, a team in transition, so we have to remind ourselves where on the journey we are.”

Wales supporters let their anger known at the final whistle on Friday as defeat allied to Turkey’s last-gasp 3-2 win in Latvia left them off two points off the Group D leaders.

Expectation

Page said disappointment was heightened by expectation after Wales’ first World Cup for 64 years in Qatar and the poor run of results were partly down to the quality of opposition they had played.

“I think the reason it was such a low moment was because of expectations we put on ourselves, because of results we’ve had and performances we’ve had,” Page said of Wales’ first European Championship home qualifying defeat for 12 years.

“There is a stat about one win in 11 games, look at the opposition we’ve been playing.

“Look at the standard of teams in the Nations League.

“If we were playing England, Netherlands or Belgium six or seven years ago it might have been more than the close games we lost in the 95th minute.

“We showed our potential in March. We are still a young group so there are going to be inconsistencies.

“There are going to be bumps along the way. Friday was a massive bump, but now we stick together as a group.”

Confident

Skipper Aaron Ramsey insists Wales can turn their fortunes around with the Turkey clash representing the halfway point of the qualifying campaign.

“I believe in this team, I am confident,” said Ramsey.

“We have a good opportunity to get back on track and hopefully concentrate on performance and hopefully the rest will take care of itself.

“We are in a decent position. If we can take full advantage of tomorrow night we will be back in this group.”

Vice-captain Ben Davies has not travelled to Samsun as the Tottenham defender has stayed at home for the birth of his first child.

Kieffer Moore also misses out after being sent off in the closing stages against Armenia.


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Mark
Mark
10 months ago

Not wanting to be all doom and gloom but it appears that the normal Cymru football cycle is in full swing again. Having watch the national team for many years we get caught in the same vortex. I hope I’m wrong.

Riki
Riki
10 months ago
Reply to  Mark

Yep, the problem also is that it seems they are too regimental, Meaning they won’t take risks when something opens up. They clearly play to Page’s Page! And cannot adapt to current play. Which says Low Football IQ among the players and no leader.

Riki
Riki
10 months ago

Is it? Ramsey, Davies, Ampadu, Roberts, Moore, N Williams, Dan James all have enough caps to say this team is settled. Excuses! They did what the Welsh do best, do the hard work and then when they need to back it up, they fold like paper. You see this across all Sports for Wales, and it’s definitely Psychological.

Last edited 10 months ago by Riki
Andy Williams
10 months ago
Reply to  Riki

Don’t forget, the hard work involved, when it comes to scoring goals. One takes enormous effort, two, three, a dream come true.

Andy Williams
10 months ago

One win in 11 games, sorry Robert Page, not good enough. I hope I’m eating my words tomorrow night.

lufcwls
lufcwls
10 months ago

There’s plenty of capped experience in that team. Rodon and Mepham just need get their heads out of their behinds.

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