Friday, December 9, 2022

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Bale urges beaten Welsh players to ‘pick themselves up’ ahead of England.

Wales football captain Gareth Bale says his side are devastated after a late loss to Iran at the 2022 World Cup on Friday – but must quickly get ready to start again.

The Dragons conceded two goals in injury time and lost 2-0 to their Asian opponents, leaving them bottom of Group B with just one game to play.

That’s against England next week and the Welsh must find a way to win if they are to reach the knockout stage – and even that now depends on other results coming their way.

Speaking to BBC Sport, Bale – who won his 110th cap to become Wales’ all-time most capped player – said the squad must find a way to rise from the heartbreaking defeat.

“It sucks. There’s no other way to say it,” he said. “We fought to the last second but it’s one of those things; It’s hard to take, but we need to recover and go again.

“We have to get up immediately. It’s going to be tough, but we still have a game to go. And we want to enjoy it too.

“It will be difficult and depends on the other game, we’ll see.”

Ahead of the game, there was bad news for some Welsh fans who were unable to travel to Doha for the game as their travel authorization app was not working properly.

Iran manager Carlos Queiroz praised his players for their tremendous performance and insisted they deserve “respect” for hitting back after beating England 6-2 last time out.

“This is just the beginning, we have to finish the work,” he said. “We supported our football and I have no words to thank our players. You were brilliant and deserve all the attention and respect.

“The players deserve to be supported, we did it for the fans. That’s the only reason we’re here.”

Iran meet the United States in their final group game, while the United States take on England later on Friday night.

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