11/10/2012 Sport Wales


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stadium, where tomorrow night, Chris Coleman's men face a fight


for World Cup qualification survival, against a very familiar


survival, against a very familiar foe in Scotland.


A fixture that hasn't always been a # This is the end


People make mistake, he made a catastrophic one, it lost us the


game. # If the sky falls


# And it comes down # John Heartson w what a great


So, plenty to look forward to tonight's Sport Wales.


Coming up: The Scots are in town to kick start


their campaign, for Wales it is simple, win. No excuses for us


moving forward now, we have to make sure that we set the record


straight in these two games that are coming up. We catch up with the


man stepping into Warren GATTland's shoes, we talk autumn


internationals and the biggest job in Welsh rugby. I thoroughly enjoy


the coaching, can't wait until the autumn to get the players back in


and look forward to the challenges ahead in the autumn. The former


Scarlet, who is now a Wasp, says there are reasons to be cheerful.


If you are a Welsh supporter, you can be optimistic of how Wales will


do this year. In under 24 hours time, Chris Coleman will send his


team out from this dressing room, hoping they can revive their World


Cup qualifying campaign, after a disastrous start. Earlier today


both Wales manager and captain shared their thoughts ahead of two


crucial games, the first against Scotland tomorrow night, and then


against Croatia on Tuesday. Time to believe is the Manchester


United dra from the marketing men. Time running -- mantra from the


marketing men, time unareing out is what will inspire Chris Coleman's


team. We have to get some points over the next few games, to give us


a chance to cause damage in the qualifiers. More misfortune, more


mayhem over the next five days, and the road to Rio could be closed off


with just four games gone. excuses moving forward, we have to


make sure we set the record straight in the two games coming up.


The picture looks worrying after the loss to Belgium and hammering


in Syria. Wales at the bottom of the group, no points, one goal


scored, and a goal difference of minus eight. Anything less than


four points from the next two games leaves them with only the slightest


hope of qualifying of the If you lose the first two, you will to do


something in the next two. The teams above you, unless they all


draw, that is a possibility, but I can't see it. So if one of them


gets a win, it is seven points, maybe you will go to ten, that is a


big, big, margin, when you are only playing ten games, with six left.


We are going to win the first game, first and foremost, then go to


Croatia, depending on what happens Friday, whether it is a must-win,


sometimes you can take a draw from a game like that. I think no-one


has won the first two games, if we get two positive results from these


two, we will be in amongst it. Players make mistake, if they make


mistake, given their best, not a lot you can say about that. You can


guide them tatically or technically, but what I don't forgive easily, is


when players don't turn up. And we didn't against Serbia. So this time,


for his own sake, Coleman needs a win that has he will luded him in


the first four games. No Wales manager in history has lost five,


but he's unphased by the pressure on him. I don't listen to the media


or read newspapers, I can't afford it. If someone is saying positive


don't listen either, stay in the middle. That is what I try to do. I


try to look at it as logically as I can. I have been doing it ten years


and managed in three different countries, and 150 games in the


Premier League, the scrutiny of that job is hard enough. So it's


not something I worry about. What's going to be will be. All I can do


is affect now and the next -- effect now and the next game.


players we are fully behind the manager, for anyone to suggest that


the manager is under any pressure, is wrong, the only manager under


pressure is Craig Levein. Everyone has the same feeling that we need


to win the game for him, ourselves and the country and everyone else,


we need to win the game for him and perform well. That will be in the


back of our heads. Maybe a change of leader on the field will inspire


Wales, as Ashley Williams replaces Aaron Ramsey as captain. It is men


like Liverpool's Joe Allen, the newly-crowned, Player of the Year,


who they need performances from. Especially with Craig Bellamy,


among several others, missing through injury, leading to more


speculation about his international future. Where will the missing


goals come from, what about Barnsley eight-goal striker, Craig


Davies. We have been look at his goal-scoring record over the last


two years, he has scored 40 goals. He's the top scorer in the


championship with seven. It's good to push Steve Morison, Churchy, he


has impressed this week, we have a lot of players missing, not just


one. We are concentrating on the boys we have got. They are here to


play for their country, here to put themselves on the line. The


pressure is there tomorrow, but they are here, and we are


concentrating on them. We will get them ready, and we will do our best


to try to get a good result. Scotland's last visit to Cardiff,


three years ago, Wales won 3-0 in a friendly, much more at stake for


both sides this time, in a contest between players, used to squaring


up of the Another fantastic nation for us to compete against. It is


during this week now we will work, you get preparations right for the


game. Had to deal with certain elements of how they play. Again,


we are extra motivate today make sure we pick up all three points. -


- motivated to make sure we pick up all three points. We understand the


importance of the game, it is a great game against one of the home


nation, Scotland. Playing at home we want to win. Tomorrow we have


Scotland, a typical British derby game, if you like. A superb


atmosphere, and we have to use that to our benefit. I know what our


fans are like, I have played in front of them. I have managed in


front of them. Against Belgium they saw the players with their sleeves


rolled up trying to play good football, first and foremost,


working hard for the jersey. They forgive you if you don't get the


result. If you don't turn up or try hard, that's the basic, really, put


yourself on the line. Less than 12 months ago, Wales won


their third game in four matches under Gary Speed. To stop another


campaign falling to ruin, they need to rediscover their air of


optimisim and hope, that winning feeling. I can't afford to look


further than the next one. Especially at this time, you have


to concentrate on the next result and performance. One game, one good


result, all of a sudden you have turned a corner.


Mr Roberts, former Wales international, home dressing room


ahead of the game. Positive noises coming from the Wales camp?


delighted to hear all the positiveness coming from the camp.


I think our campaign starts tomorrow night. I think it's a game


we have to go into. We have to win, we know that. I don't think even a


point is good enough for you. It's probably the lowest a lot of people


have felt of after the Serbia game. We weren't good enough, poor, poor


errors, individual mistakes. It doesn't matter how good a manager


you are, if you can prepare a team as well as you can, but you can't


legislate for the mistakes that we did, and cost us that night.


Chris Coleman, has made a clear stamp on things, let's start with


the change of captaincy. What do you make of that? We have lost five


games on the spin, we have only scored one goal, something has to


happen. Chris has to change things. I think it will be a slight relief


to Aaron, there was a lot of responsibility and pressure on such


a young man and young shoulders, when he wasn't playing well, having


come back from a horrendous injurey. Hopefully it will free him to find


the form we know he's capable of. Goals, Iwan were are they coming


from? The problem is we don't create enough chances. You are


asking a lot of a centre forward if you are going to create one chance


in 90 minutes and cross your fingers that he takes that chance.


We have to be creating four or five, or six chances for these players in


each game. If we do, that we will score. Will he chose Craig Davies,


are we at that stage, he has nothing to lose, it might be a


gamble, but at this stage? We have nothing to lose, we have to win the


game. Not too many nations qualify for a major tournament, having lost


the opening two games in a campaign. We have to beat the Scots tomorrow.


It is as simple as that. He's a man in form, full of confidence, seven


goals already this season for Barnsley, four against Birmingham


the other week. He wasn't in the other squad, which I was quite


surprised at, to be fair. If I was manager for the game tomorrow night,


I would start with 4-4-2, I would throw Craig Davies on to partner


Steve Morison, he will get you two natural winners, and positive from


the very start. We will talk more shortly.


Rugby, now. The build-up to this year as Heineken Cup has been


dominated by talk of its potential demise. A row over money,


scheduling and TV rights, has threaten to derail Europe's show


piece tournament. For now, we can put admin to one side, and


concentrate on the rugby itself. Ross Harris has been to meet a man,


who has played in more of his fair share of Heineken Cup, and to get


his thoughts on how the Welsh regions might fare this year.


Since Welsh rugby went regional in 2003, Wales have won three Grand


Slams, but the Heineken Cup, club rugby's Holy Grail, has never been


lifted by a Welsh side. In its 17- year history, it has been won six


times by the English, six by the Irish, and five times by the French.


If the bookies have things right, that trend is set to continue.


Lenister have been installed at pre-tournament fairts, followed


closely by Toulouse, to you lon and others. The future is looking


precarious, the English and French clubs aren't happy with the way it


is run and are threatening to pull out by 2014. Despite money and


scheduling issues, they are made fight tooth and nail to qualify,


while the pro--12 sides have an easy ride in.


Stephen Jones has played in all three European domestic leison. Now


he's in the English Premiership with Wasps. Do the pro--12 sides


have it easier for qualification? don't think so, we must have a


European competition. From a players' perspective that is the


best competition to be involved in. The standard of rugby is top drawer.


You know, it is exciting for the players. The pro--12 is is a very


strong league, we can see it by past winners. The standard of rugby


played in the pro-12 is of the highest order. I think we should


continue with the competition along the lines in which it is run at the


moment. Stephen's old team, the Scarlets, find themselves in a pool


of debt, alongside Exeter and Lenister. They kick off against the


French team. They will be looking forward to it. The Scarlets have


backed themselves, rightly so, when they have wonderful talent like


they have. They won't change their game plan, they look to be


expansive, ar get the ball through their hands -- and get the ball


through their hands. They look forward to that challenge. Even


though you spent two seasons in France, I bet there is only one


team you are gunning from? interested and intrigued in the


game. Of course emotions are attached to both side, having spent


the majority of my rugby-playing cor around the Scarlets, I want


Leicester and Toulouse await in pool 2, but they start at home


against Treviso, a team they have lost to already this season the


played them in a pre-season game, we played them with the Carl lets,


very physical, good driving mob, direct behind. Their game plan is


relatively simplistic. Where you have to feel happy if our an


Ospreys fan, is the last three games they have been superb. They


were successful down in Munster. They backed it up with another good


win last week. They are peaking at the right time. Steve Tandy must be


very happy. In group six, the Blues mind themselves against month pelia


and Toulon. They relish the battle up front.


First up they face Sale, a team in crisis and rooted in the


Premiership. I know some of the players there, and they will be


chomping at the bit and excited for the competition. They got to Sale


and will back themselves and their own ability. They will be confident


of victory up there. Looking particularly at Toulon and the


problems in the Blue's scrumage, they can afford to leave Gethin


Jenkins on the bench. They are recruiting world class players all


the time. Across their pack, the looseheads, you have Gethin Jenkins


and Sheridan. They are spoilt for choice. With that you can rotate


and keep people refreshed and healthy. That is massive advantage.


Stephen as current side, Wasps, have twice lifted the Heineken Cup.


In recent years they have tumbled down the pecking order and are now


in the Challenge Cup. The first opponents is The Dragons?


former Newport player, does that give him some spice? I'm sure Shane


has many fond memories, a side we have a lot of respect for. I know


them well through playing against them with the Scarlet, they are a


well-drilled side. It will be a tough game. Another team in your


group, Bayon, featuring an old Welsh half back. It is always good


to play against Mike, a physical game, it is enjoyable when you play


against him. He's a great player. A trip out to Bayon will be nice,


great part of the world to go. It is all good.


Thank you for your time. Good luck on the weekend. Cheers.


The latest meeting over the future of the Heineken Cup ended in


stalemate on Monday. Brinkmanship will continue in the broad room


over the coming months. For -- boardroom for the coming months.


For now, let's focus on the pitch. We will stay with rugby, and no


Welsh team has ever won the Heineken Cup, in fact, the Welsh


coach, Rob Howley, is one of only eight Welshmen to have ever got


their hands on the trophy. The man who scored the winning try for


Wasps, in the 2004 final, will take part of the national side, as


GATTland takes a Saab battle. We shares his thoughts on the biggest


job in Welsh rugby. Wasps, 2004, why did you win the


Heineken Cup? We had a good team, good team spirit, strong foundation,


and probably a side with quite a few world chas players in the pack.


I think that the key aspect was along the way, outclassed in the


final against To Toulouse, a bit of luck at the end. Would it be share


to say, looking at the Welsh regions right now, they are not at


that level of Heineken Cup winners? The experience you need in Europe


you gain the experience by the competition, year in year out. When


you see the regions, they have three new coaches. That takes time


for messages and processes to be put in play. We still have a feel


anything Wales we can still be very competitive in Europe. I think on


their day, when you look at the scarlet, all when they are allowed


to play rugby and get their offloading game, they have a huge


amount of talent in their squad. When you look at the Welsh regions


now, how important personally is Heineken Cup success or


competitiveness? It is very important. I think the Heineken Cup


is where players are tested, both physically, and the pressure. And


making decisions. And actually making those opportunities count.


That is what you have to do in international rugby. The speed of


the game is quicker, ultimately your decision making has to be


better. Obviouslys that is the challenge of a player or team when


you play in the Heineken Cup. It is a step up. The step up faces Howley


too, as he takes over from Warren Gatland, for the opening


international of what will be an often gruelling series. First up


the grunt of Argentina, then the shout of Samoa, before returning to


face the top two sides in the world, New Zealand and Australia. Who pick


the squad considering your in charge of the first two games and


then Gatland comes back in. Who has the final shout? The one thing


about Warren over the last four or five years, he's been a natural


part of selection. Who has impressed you? Jordan Williams, and


Lee Williams, they have been pretty impressive.


They are the sort of players that have stood out. Andy Phenby. And


Dan Bigger has stepped up in terms of his running game, he has asked


questions about the defence. We know about his kicking game. The


next four or five weeks it is about winning. On December 3rd at 3.3030


there will be a Rugby World Cup tour. Ale goal of every nation will


be in to be the top four. Do you know the maths? I think it


goes back to beating a southern Hemisphere team. We play Australia


number two and New Zealand number one. We are determined that


Argentina and Samoa, we have had experiences in Rugby World Cup, we


have played them before, a couple of others, argen tone that, their


experiences in the rugby championship, has been pretty


impressive, week in week out. We have four tough games in the autumn.


Obviously everyone will be keeping an eye on the ranking. It is the


job of the players and coaches and everyone to be in the top four to


give us an easier draw. Back to the big game, Scotland have


only lost once in six World Cup qualifying campaigns. After


disappointing back-to-back draws in their opening games. They will look


to improve the record, and take maximum points off bottom of the


table Wales. Like Wales, there was much


optimisim in Scotland before they started their campaign for World


Cup qualification in Rio 2014. After home draws against Serbia and


Macedonia, that optimisim has been replayed by disappointment.


The Scotland manager, Craig Levein, like Chris Coleman, is under


pressure, despite an undefeated start, and securing two points more


than Wales. The stakes, then, couldn't be higher ahead of


Friday's game. Two home draws is not what the doctor ordered for


Scotland. The chance to redeem ourselves, and get back on track, a


victory in Wales. We can't think too far ahead, the


group we are in. We need to concentrate on the next game. That


is Wales. If we win that, will give us five points. I'm looking forward


to the game, riot from the moment the draw was made. There is little


bits exciting as you can imagine. As opposed to a normal qualifying


match. The Scottish squad has been boosted this week, with the return


of the two Fletchers, Manchester United's Darren Fletcher, who has


been out of the game through illness for Tennant months. And


Sunderland's leading scorer, Stephen Fletcher, who has not been


around after making himself not available for selection last year,


after a falling out with his manager.


A goal scorer is worth his weight in gold. Stephen Fletcher is a goal


scorer, it is great he has resolved the situation with the manager or


the manager with him, they have made up and he's back in the squad.


Dan flech certificate quality player, he has played many times


and many international, and European matches. One thing we can


look forward to on Friday night a good old British derby, with


Scotland ready for whatever Wales will throw at them. Sometimes it is


a different type of football. When you are playing Spain you know you


will get a short pass, and keeping ball position and all those things.


Wales have a couple of big strikers who could knock them from back to


front and play through the mid-of the talent. Aaron Ramsey and these


lads here. Both sets of players knows and has played against each


other, it will be a tough match, but we are looking forward to it.


Scotland has seasoned enforcers in the squad, and Gareth Bale could be


in for the type of attention that he has received from Charlie Adam


in the Premier League. I wouldn't single out and say Bale will win


the game for him. If we could stoch him it would enhance per-- stop him


and enhance performance and better the Khans of taking the game.


person who knows about Scottish misfortunes, is Neil Lennon, who


could have five players in the match? James Forest is an


exceptional player, very quick, old school winner, both feet. He could


really hurt Wales, he is one to watch. Charlie is the current


Scotland Player of the Year, a great example to any player out


there. Scott Brown, leader, inspirational player, reads the


game well, covers the ground. He's at the heart of everything good


about us at the moment. There was supposed to be two Welsh players,


but an ankle injury today, ruled out the fullback Adam Matthews,


leaving Joe Ledley to fly the flag. Joe has been one of the best


players, consistent and a midfield player. With Wales hurting after


the 6-1 defeat in Serbia. Scotland will be targeting all three points


tomorrow. I'm desperate to win the game. It is a big game for us, as a


group of players, and as a country. We want to win it, and hopefully we


can. With the talent like Beale and the Ledleys, you know the Matthewss,


the Ashley Williams, they have a good span of team there. There is


no reason why they can't. I think they will give Scotland all the


trouble that Scotland will be looking for. Can't see Wales


beating Scotland, I'm sorry to say at that to Chris. But I think


Scotland have too many better players than Wales, and usually the


better players win football matches. The danger for us is that we always


get some sort of response from that. Are you worried about that?


worrieded about a lot of things. A deem that has a poor result


generally when they come out for the next match. With pure


determination to go on through. The toings increases through the


fixture. -- the tension increases through the fixture. We are all


under pressure, it is a different job to club football.


Sometimes if you have a poor result, that you have to wait a period of


time to fix it, which makes it quite difficult.


Iwan, former Scotland manager, Jason Brown, he fancies Scotland to


win this one. He says they are better than Wales, what do you make


of that? I totally disagree. I back on the game, we played them in 2009,


we beat Scotland by 3-0. We are having a bad time, so are they.


They have only won once in the last five games, that is a friendly


against Australia back in August. We have a better squad of players.


I think we have better players in the Welsh squad.


Have you thought about what happens if Wales lose, is that it for


Chris? I think the players, deep down they know, first of all they


let themselves down against Serbia. They let the fans down. And they


let Chris down, they will be determined to put things right, and


owe people a performance. I'm sure we will get one. Predictions?


win. Thank you very much. That's it for this evening, there will be


highlights of Wales against Scotland on Match of the Day Wales


at 11.00pm tomorrow night on BBC Two Wales. Before I go, do you know


anyone who deserves to be our BBC Waleser Wales sports unsung hero of


the year, they have to be un-- BBC Wales, unsung hero of the year.


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