Joe Allen is ‘fit and raring to go’ for Wales’ crunch World cup clash against Iran, says manager Rob Page… with the midfielder ready for his first game in two months after recovering from a hamstring injury
- Joe Allen has been unavailable for the past two months with a hamstring injury
- The midfielder has now been passed fit ahead of Wales’ clash with Iran on Friday
- Gareth Bale is set to become the Dragons’ most capped player in the game
- The 33-year-old said he wanted to make the game ‘even more special’ with a win
- Follow Sportsmail’s live blog for all the latest World Cup news and updates
- Click here for the latest World Cup 2022 news, fixtures, live action and results
Wales have received a considerable boost ahead of their World Cup clash against Iran after Joe Allen was passed fit.
The 32-year-old midfielder has been out since September with a hamstring injury, and will be a key player for Wales as they enter must-win territory following Monday’s 1-1 draw with the United States.
He has racked up 72 caps for his country since his 2009 debut and was named in the Euro 2016 team of the tournament as the Dragons reached the semi finals.
Joe Allen has been passed fit for Wales’ clash with Iran after two months out injured
‘Joe got through his fitness test, so that’s good news. He’s fit and raring to go,’ said Wales coach Rob Page, who is set to hand Kieffer Moore a starting spot after the striker came off the bench to spark Wales’ revival against the USA.
‘We were all concerned about him because of the extent of the injury.
‘He kept breaking down. We had to meet targets along the way and they’ve met every target. Last week they pushed him to 100 per cent. It was a gamble.’
The Iran game will be a big occasion for Wales captain Gareth Bale, who is set to overtake Chris Gunter as the country’s most capped player.
The former Real Madrid star is also his nation’s leading scorer with 41 goals, and explained how keen he was to make his landmark 110th cap a game to remember.
‘I haven’t really been focusing on the cap thing to be honest, just trying to focus on the game,’ he said.
‘On a personal level it’s an amazing achievement, it’s an honour to represent my country so many times.
Wales manager Rob Page said the 32-year-old midfielder was ‘fit and raring to go’
‘But it’s more important that we try and get the victory. Hopefully we can and it’ll make it even more special.’
Bale played the entire game against the USA which, like so many in this tournament, went well beyond 100 minutes due to stoppages and substitutions. He scored a vital late equaliser from the penalty spot after Wales were behind for much of the game.
The 33-year-old said in the month leading up to the World Cup that he had been dealing with a ‘few little issues’ and he had only played 30 minutes of football before the USA opener.
‘I’m feeling OK, obviously it took a few days before I could feel my legs again,’ he added.
Gareth Bale is set to become Wales’ most capped player in the Iran game on Friday
‘But we are professionals, we try to recover and do the best we can. Playing 104 minutes, or whatever it was, isn’t ideal when you’ve got a game four days later.
‘Everyone is doing all they can to recover for the next game. I’ve not played loads before I came here, but I’ve dealt with it before and it won’t be a problem.’
Page, asked at his own pre-match press conference about the possibility of resting Bale against Iran, said: ‘Good luck not picking him.’
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