Bale misses Wales’ Dutch friendly, Bradshaw earns first call
Holly Thackeray | November 4, 2015
Bale plays no part in Dutch duel
Real Madrid winger Gareth Bale will not feature in Wales’ friendly fixture against the Netherlands, as Dragons coach Chris Coleman has left the world’s most expensive player out of his squad for the clash at the Cardiff City Stadium on November 13th.
Dangerman Bale was originally set to be included for the dead-rubber duel, but will be rested instead as he continues to recover from a hamstring injury that has kept him from club duty.
Wales (66/1 outsiders with Coral to win Euro 2016) had previously selected the 26-year-old wing wizard for their final Euro 2016 qualifiers, even though Bale had been struggling for fitness, a decision which was met with criticism in the Spanish capital.
With the British Isles side now guaranteed a place in the France finals, it appears Madrid and Wales are cautiously wrapping the wideman in cotton wool. Though, the former Spurs star’s omission has left the door ajar for another intriguing attacking call-up, with Tom Bradshaw a notable new addition to Coleman’s squad.
Tom Bradshaw to make Dragons debut?
Walsall forward Bradshaw is currently the League One outfit’s top scorer across all competitions, contributing nine goals and four assists in a sensational start to the season which has seen the Midlands men top the third-tier summit, and earning attention from Coleman.
The uncapped attacker is just 23, but has impressed club coach Dean Smith with his all-round workrate as well as his goal haul. Speaking recently, Smith stated: “We’ve scored seven goals against Colchester and Gillingham in our last two games and best of all Bradshaw hasn’t been on the score-sheet.
“Tom hasn’t scored, but his work rate and the way he works two centre-backs is exceptional.
“It allows us to have another man in midfield and helps create chances for other players and that is really unselfish of him,” said the Saddlers boss of his Shrewsbury-born striker. It sounds like Bradshaw will fit right in to Coleman’s hard-grafting, team-orientated play, then.
Elsewhere, usual Premier League suspects Ashley Williams, Ben Davies and Joe Allen have all been included on Coelman’s roster, while Huddersfield Town loanee Emyr Huws also retains a spot in the squad.
Though, the Dragons have been dealt further injury blows, as Arsenal midfielder Aaron Ramsey and Reading attacker Hal Robson-Kanu are both sidelined for this clash. In a boost, however, Newcastle United defender Paul Dummett returns to the fold following a hamstring problem.
Wales squad for Netherlands friendly in full
Goalkeepers: Wayne Hennessey (Crystal Palace), Daniel Ward (Liverpool/Aberdeen), Owain Fon Williams (Inverness Caledonian Thistle)
Defenders: Ashley Williams (Swansea City), James Chester (West Bromwich Albion), James Collins (West Ham United), Ben Davies (Tottenham Hotspur), Chris Gunter (Reading), Neil Taylor (Swansea City), Adam Henley (Blackburn Rovers), Paul Dummett (Newcastle United)
Midfielders: Joe Ledley (Crystal Palace), Joe Allen (Liverpool), David Vaughan (Nottingham Forest), Emyr Huws (Wigan Athletic/Huddersfield Town), Jonathan Williams (Crystal Palace), Andy King (Leicester City), David Edwards (Wolverhampton Wanderers)
Forwards: David Cotterill (Birmingham City), Tom Lawrence (Leicester City), Tom Bradshaw (Walsall), Simon Church (Milton Keynes Dons), Sam Vokes (Burnley)