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Huge day for Wales : Dewch ymlaen Cymru !
Saturday, 18th Nov 2023 08:00 by Dennis Evans

There are numerous permutations that can affect Wales qualification over the next few days in their quest to get to the Euros in Germany 2024. We have the latest info on the big match later today against Armenia ( KO 2pm UK time )

Croatia take on Latvia at the Skonto Stadium in Riga around an hour after Wales game against Armenia concludes. IF Wales win and Latvia somehow beat Croatia, it’s game over for the Croats and they will not qualify automatically for next years tournament. That would leave Tuesdays game at home to Türkiye pretty much redundant regards qualification for Wales, and that would suit Wales head coach Rob Page down to the ground. However, the likelihood of that is slim. Latvia have just three points to their name and have no chance of qualification. Wales are currently level on ten points with Croatia, each side having played six games.

* Türkiye have already qualified for UEFA EURO 2024
* Wales will qualify if they can beat Armenia in Yerevan and Croatia lose to Latvia.
* Croatia will not be able to qualify through the group if they lose to Latvia and Wales win.
* Armenia will not be able to finish in the top two if they lose to Wales. They will suffer the same fate if they draw and Croatia win.
* Latvia are unable to qualify but can play a part in who reaches UEFA EURO 2024.

Wales will surely look to Brennan Johnson in this game. He scored last time out for Spurs at Wolves and is back in the fold. Non selection and injury haven’t helped Brennan but if it’s goals Page wants then Brennan has to start ? Harry Wilson is another in form player after his heroics for his country in the defeat of Croatia during the last international break. If this side ticks later today that horrible memory of defeat to Armenia in the home tie back in June can be erased somewhat. Wales roller coaster nights in Cardiff bring back so many memories, and with the ghost of Gareth Bake now put to rest - and a younger crop of players to turn to it really is now about coping with the pressure and getting the job done today.

Wales captain Ben Davies has been talking about Aaron Ramsey this week. We’re a tightknit group,” Davies said. “It’s nice when you have a group where you see the same faces every time you come and you end up playing as a family. I think we have shown that is where our success has been gained, by being a band of brothers out there fighting for Wales. We are very proud to be doing that.” Ramsey is absent for Saturday’s meeting with Armenia and Tuesday’s encounter with Turkey, who have qualified already, because of a knee tendon injury but was determined to be with his teammates.

Rob Page with Harry Wilson & Neco Williams

Rob Page seemed happy that Ramsey had travelled with the team to Armenia.“Rambo’s travelled with the lads, which is brilliant. It is a boost, his presence around the changing room. I used to say it with Gareth Bale. Aaron falls into the same category for me. He’s the captain and he’s been wanting to travel. “He’s been with the group all week. He’s done his little bits of work that he’s needed to for Cardiff. He’s gone off and done his own bits – we had to find a training ground for him earlier. But he wants to be around the boys and I think that speaks volumes about what we’ve got as a group.”

Hopefully the extra expense pays off for Wales. And that’s not being cynical, that’s fact.Ramsey has also utilised Wales training time to aid his recovery from his recent injury. That’s fine, but really he should be at his club getting fit, not with his country getting fit for his club.

Wales take on Armenia in Yerevan, kick off 2pm this afternoon.

Photographs licensed from Reuters

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