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Coleman: Bale can cope with the attention

Chris Coleman has no doubt that Gareth Bale will be ready for the extra attention he will receive when Wales start their Euro 2016 campaign against Slovakia on Saturday.

Bale was the key to Wales qualifying for their first major tournament since 1958 and he heads to France having won the Champions League with Real Madrid a fortnight ago.

The eyes of the footballing world will be watching Bale throughout Wales’ stay in France, and Slovakia will no doubt be keeping a keen eye on him in Bordeaux.

But manager Coleman says Bale is used to being in the spotlight.

“When you become the most expensive player in the world and play for Real Madrid it becomes normal for teams to pay you a lot of attention. Gareth Bale is used to it,” Coleman said at Friday’s pre-match news conference.

“He is used to having the eyes of the world on him and he is looking forward to it. I expect everyone we play against to show him attention.”

Coleman urged his team to enjoy the occasion against Slovakia, but reminded Wales that they have a job to do in France.

“Walking out will be something special but we have to remember we are not just here to have a smile and joke. We are here to perform,” he added.

“We won’t change what has made us successful. I want to see our players enjoying it. They have earned it.”

Fri 10 Jun, 2016
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