November 18, 2019 / 3:55 PM / 24 days ago

Bale and Ramsey ready to start in Wales' crucial Euro 2020 qualifier

(Reuters) - Gareth Bale and Aaron Ramsey are both ready to start for Wales in their decisive Euro 2020 qualifier against Hungary on Tuesday, manager Ryan Giggs has said.

Soccer Football - Euro 2020 Qualifier - Wales Press Conference - The Vale Resort, Hensol, Wales, Britain - November 18, 2019 Wales' Gareth Bale during the press conference Action Images via Reuters/Andrew Boyers

Real Madrid forward Bale featured for an hour in Wales’ 2-0 victory over Azerbaijan on Saturday after spending a month on the sidelines with a calf problem.

The 30-year-old was replaced by Ramsey, who has struggled with niggling injuries in recent months and made just eight appearances for Juventus this season.

“The lads who go minutes needed minutes. It’s a bit of a balancing act, the players I know who can’t play 90 minutes - that will obviously influence the selection,” Giggs told a news conference on Monday.

“Gareth and Aaron were in that scenario. They are both ready to start.”

The win in Azerbaijan along with Croatia’s victory over Slovakia in Group E means Wales can secure automatic qualification for Euro 2020 by beating Hungary in Cardiff.

“We needed favours and we got those favours, now it is time for us to capitalise, it’s in our hands,” Giggs said. “It’s a great, exciting challenge for us but we need to finish the job - it will be a very, very difficult game.”

Bale played an influential role as Wales stormed to the semi-finals of Euro 2016 in France, eclipsing their previous best run to the quarter-finals at the 1958 World Cup.

However, injury kept him out of the defeat by the Republic of Ireland that ended Wales’ 2018 World Cup qualifying hopes.

“I think we can use both of (the experiences) to our advantage,” Bale said.

“We have got the kind of euphoria of qualifying for our first Euros and doing so well at the competition that we really want to do that again.

“We can see how we don’t want to feel after the game. We know prior to this game we can push and push not to feel like that again, because it’s not a feeling you want in the dressing room after the game.”

Reporting by Hardik Vyas in Bengaluru; Editing by Christian Radnedge

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