Rob Page draws on play-off experience after Wales miss out on Euro qualification

Rob Page insists Wales can attain Euro 2024 by drawing on their profitable World Cup play-off historical past.

Wales had been consigned to the Euro play-offs in March after a controversial 1-1 draw with Turkey in Cardiff.

Neco Williams’ early strike was cancelled out by Yusuf Yazici’s second-half penalty – with Page suggesting Wales would have gained with one other referee – because the Dragons fell brief of their bid to overhaul Croatia for the second computerized qualifying place behind group winners Turkey.

Croatia secured computerized qualification with a 1-0 dwelling victory over Armenia, leaving Wales within the play-offs with a house semi-final in opposition to both Finland, Iceland or Ukraine. Poland and Estonia will contest the opposite semi-final.

The identification of Wales’ opponents can be decided by a draw on Thursday – and boss Page hopes play-off historical past will repeat itself as Austria and Ukraine had been overwhelmed in Cardiff en path to reaching the 2022 World Cup.

“We are going to throw every part into the preparation for the play-offs now,” stated Page, who will attend the draw at Nyon in Switzerland.

“I’m happy it’s a house draw. What our supporters do is unbelievable and this place is a fortress. We by no means disappoint and the gang by no means disappoints – Croatia, Turkey, the Austria and Ukraine video games.

“The lads who had been within the play-offs have had these experiences.

“They managed the feelings of the Ukraine recreation for apparent causes and that may stand them in good stead for these video games.

“We’ve had some huge nights right here and we go into the play-offs with confidence.”

Wales had three penalty appeals turned down in a nine-minute spell halfway by way of the primary half.

Harry Wilson went down in a tangle of legs with with Abdulkerim Bardakci earlier than Brennan Johnson was floored by a sliding Samet Akaydin sort out when the defender didn’t make contact with the ball.

Akaydin then flattened Johnson from behind in a crowded goalmouth, however neither Slovenian referee Matej Jug nor VAR got here to the conclusion it was a penalty.

So as to add insult to harm, Jug determined Ben Davies had pushed Kenan Yildiz over and awarded a doubtful Seventieth-minute penalty.

Requested if Wales would have gained with one other referee, Page replied: “I’ve to watch out what I say. However I consider so, if I’m being utterly sincere.

“It’s a stonewall penalty, one of the vital apparent penalties I’ve seen, in opposition to Brennan. The defender’s obtained the fallacious facet of him, he runs into him and takes him out.

“Then we’ve conceded the softest penalty you’ll ever concede. It’s so irritating. The VAR verify was over after 10 seconds.

“I can’t get my head round it, I can’t actually perceive how they’ve come to that call.”

Wales will return to motion in March on the again of an unbeaten six-game run, stitched collectively after back-to-back June defeats to Armenia and Turkey that finally value them expensive.

However Page was delighted by his facet’s efficiency following a tepid show in drawing 1-1 away to Armenia on Saturday.

He stated: “I feel you noticed from the primary minute we had been at them. I challenged JJ (Jordan James) and Ethan (Ampadu) to be slightly extra artistic on the ball.

“I believed each of them stepped as much as the plate – after which some. JJ went to a different degree and from the primary minute there was no considered ‘we’ve obtained the play-offs’.

“We weren’t taking our foot off the gasoline. We had been going for the win.

“If we will recreate the efficiency we had in opposition to Croatia, dwelling and away, and Turkey – even out there earlier than we went right down to 10 males – then we can be OK.”

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