Sunday, 21 October, 2018

Gareth Bale to miss Wales-Spain friendly, Giggs confirms

Real Madrid Bale a headache for every coach he's had REAL MADRID Real Madrid Bale a headache for every boss he's had at La Liga club David Maher Sportsfile via Getty Images
Cary Erickson | 12 October, 2018, 18:27

Spain coach Luis Enrique says the absence of Gareth Bale in Thursday's global friendly against Wales will not change how his team approaches the contest.

Wales fans endured a miserable night as Ryan Giggs' side were outplayed by Spain in a 4-1 defeat in their friendly in Cardiff.

Bale is now with Wales' squad and although he will not feature against Spain he could play against Republic of Ireland next Tuesday.

More slack Wales marking was punished by Bartra's flicked header from a Suso corner and, despite Vokes untidily finishing off a brilliant David Brooks cross with a minute to play, the final scoreline reflected Spain's dominance. He has, we're told, "muscle fatigue" and will be limited to a dressing-room-and-bench-only tubthumping role, tiptoeing onto the pitch only for the pre-match presentation of a souvenir golden boot to mark his recently-earned status as Wales's greatest ever goalscorer.

The visitors' second goal came from a free-kick from the former Liverpool forward that reached Ramos who headed into the bottom corner.

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Defender Marc Bartra, who like Alcacer played under Enrique at Barca, got his first global goal with a header from a corner in the 74th, Spain's 12th strike under the new coach after beating Croatia 6-0 and England 2-1 in the Nations League.

A run of seven goals in four appearances for Dortmund, including a hat-trick off the bench in his last game, earned Alcacer another chance in the global fold and the striker grasped his opportunity with a well-taken brace in the first half, outshining Morata in attack. "We shall see which player replaces him".

So, Wales v Spain!

- Sam Vokes has been directly involved in five goals in his last four games for Wales (three goals, two assists).