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Gareth Bale

Bale named in Wales squad for World Cup play-off final


London (AFP) – Gareth Bale has been named in the Wales squad for their World Cup play-off final against Scotland or Ukraine despite recent back trouble as they seek to qualify for the tournament for the first time since 1958.

The captain has made just two substitute appearances for Real Madrid since scoring both goals in Wales’s 2-1 World Cup play-off victory over Austria on March 24.

The 32-year-old has been absent from Real’s past five matchday squads with a back problem but has returned to training in the Spanish capital and is on course to be available for the club’s Champions League final clash against Liverpool on May 28.

Aaron Ramsey is included for the play-off in Cardiff on June 5 after suffering penalty shoot-out misery for Rangers in their Europa League final loss to Eintracht Frankfurt on Wednesday.

Leicester goalkeeper Danny Ward is available again after knee surgery and replaces Salford’s Tom King. 

Bournemouth forward Kieffer Moore also returns to the squad after missing the Austria win with a broken foot.

Wales also face four Nations League ties in June, with home and away games against the Netherlands as well as a trip to Poland and a visit from Belgium.

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