Bale in Wales squad for Euro 2020 qualifier

An injury forced Gareth Bale to miss the LaLiga win over Real Valladolid on Sunday, but he is in Wales' squad to face Slovakia. Arsenal's 19-year old forward Daniel Ballard has been called up to the Northern Ireland squad for the first time

Wales forward Gareth Bale   -  Getty Images

Gareth Bale has been included in Wales' squad for the upcoming Euro 2020 qualifier against Slovakia, despite missing Real Madrid's win over Real Valladolid on Sunday through injury.

The forward appeared to suffer an ankle injury last week during Madrid's shock 4-1 home loss to Ajax in the Champions League which dumped the holders out of the competition at the last-16 stage.

Bale was then not involved as Madrid came from behind to beat Valladolid, which proved to be Santiago Solari's final match in charge before Zinedine Zidane's return to the club was confirmed on Monday.

Wales boss Ryan Giggs has included Bale as part of his 31-man squad for the friendly with Trinidad and Tobago next Wednesday and the nation's first Euro 2020 qualifier against Slovakia four days later.

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Speaking at a news conference, Giggs told reporters: "I have [had a chat with Bale]. I was as worried as anyone else, but he should be fine.

"He is a fantastic player, when Gareth turns up he gives everyone a lift."

Rotherham United midfielder Will Vaulks has earned his first call-up but Aston Villa defender James Chester and on-loan Derby County midfielder Andy King miss out through injury.

 

Wales squad

Wayne Hennessey, Danny Ward, Adam Davies, Chris Maxwell; Chris Gunter, Ashley Williams, Ben Davies, Neil Taylor, Connor Roberts, Ethan Ampadu, Declan John, Tom Lockyer, Chris Mepham, Paul Dummett, James Lawrence, Ryan Hedges; Aaron Ramsey, Joe Allen, David Brooks, Ben Woodburn, Harry Wilson, Matthew Smith, Lee Evans, Daniel James, Will Vaulks, George Thomas, Rabbi Matondo; Gareth Bale, Sam Vokes, Tom Lawrence, Tyler Roberts.

 

-Arsenal teenager gets Ireland call up-

Arsenal defender Daniel Ballard has featured thrice for the Northern Ireland's Under-21s.   -  Getty Images

 

Arsenal teenager Daniel Ballard has been called up to the Northern Ireland squad for the first time for the Euro 2020 qualifiers against Estonia and Belarus.

The 19-year-old featured three times for the Northern Ireland Under-21s last year, scoring in the 1-0 win over Iceland and starting in the victories over Spain and Slovakia.

He is the only new face in Michael O'Neill's 27-man group, though there are recalls for forwards Will Grigg and Conor Washington.

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Sheffield United midfielder Oliver Norwood has been omitted for personal reasons while Jamie Ward, Kyle Vassell, Michael Smith and Trevor Carson are all missing through injury.

Northern Ireland, who reached the last 16 at Euro 2016, begin Euro 2020 qualifying against Estonia on March 21 in Belfast before another home game against Belarus three days later.

Their group also includes Germany and Netherlands.

Northern Ireland squad

Michael McGovern, Bailey Peacock-Farrell, Conor Hazard; Jamal Lewis, Conor McLaughlin, Craig Cathcart, Jonny Evans, Gareth McAuley, Tom Flanagan, Paddy McNair, Aaron Hughes, Daniel Ballard; Corry Evans, Stuart Dallas, Steven Davis, Shane Ferguson, George Saville, Niall McGinn, Jordan Jones, Gavin Whyte, Jordan Thompson; Kyle Lafferty, Liam Boyce, Will Grigg, Conor Washington, Josh Magennis, Paul Smyth.

 

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