Joe Allen will NOT be fit to feature in Wales’ World Cup opener against the USA… in a blow to Rob Page, who gambled on the fitness of the former Liverpool man in his squad for Qatar
- Rob Page confirmed that midfielder Joe Allen will miss Wales’ World Cup opener
- Wales are due to face USA in their opening match in Qatar on Monday evening
- The 32-year-old has not played since September because of a hamstring injury
- Page admitted that medical staff did not want to ‘push’ Allen to return early
- Click here for the latest World Cup 2022 news, fixtures, live action and results
Wales midfielder Joe Allen will not be fit enough to feature for his country in their World Cup opener against USA.
Rob Page’s side held an open training session on Monday afternoon as they prepared for their first encounter of the group stage against the USA – where Allen will be unable to feature.
The 32-year-old was a major doubt for the match given the fact he’s not played a match since September due to a hamstring injury.
Wales midfielder Joe Allen will be unable to feature in their World Cup opener tomorrow
Rob Page had been planning to face the USA without Allen given his absence since September
Page told the media in his pre-match press conference: ‘He is probably not going to make it, to be completely honest.
‘We said from the start we were going to give every possible chance but he’s not going to make it. We could have pushed him but if he breaks down then he is out of the tournament.’
Page has reserved hopes that Allen will be able to feature for his side later in the tournament, should they progress further than the group stage.
The Swansea midfielder completed some drills with the rest of the Wales squad, during open training, but ultimately ended the session by working on some individual drills.
The 32-year-old had played eight games for Swansea this year before picking up an injury
Allen himself had previously admitted that he hoped that he would be fit enough to feature in time for his nation’s World Cup opener.
‘I’m hoping to be fit for the first game. There isn’t much time, but this is an important week for me,’ Allen said.
‘It’s improving, thankfully. I’m doing everything I can to get myself fit for the World Cup.
‘I really want to prove my fitness. We’ll have to see how this week goes, but I feel confident and comfortable that it won’t be too much of a problem.’
The 32-year-old has made 72 appearances for his national side – scoring two goals in that time
OGC Nice midfielder Aaron Ramsey will likely start in the heart of midfield for Page’s side, alongside either Chelsea loanee Ethan Ampadu or Portsmouth’s Joe Morrell.
Wales start their World Cup campaign with Monday’s Group B opener against the United States, before later facing Iran and England.
It’s the nation’s first appearance at the World Cup finals since 1958.
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