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Ledley backs Bale for 100 Wales caps

Wales midfielder Joe Ledley said Gareth Bale will go on and collect 100 caps as the Real Madrid star prepares to make his 50th appearance.

Bale is set for a half-century of international appearances when Wales host Belgium in their Euro 2016 Group B qualifier at Cardiff City Stadium on Friday.

No Welsh player has reached three figures, with former goalkeeper Neville Southall’s 92-cap record still intact.

However, Ledley believes his 25-year-old team-mate will become Wales’ first centurion.

“You could see Gareth had something special, brilliant on the ball, fast, and you could see his free-kicks as well. He has always had that,” Ledley said of Bale, who made his international bow at just 16 years, 315 days.

“You never thought ‘maybe Madrid’ but that is down to him. That is his dedication and the way that he has focused on the game and, credit to him, he deserves to be where he is.

“For me he is one of the best players in the world and I think Gareth and Wayne [Hennessey] will get to 100 caps, and Chris Gunter is also over 50 at such a young age.

“I roomed with him once or twice as we had just come into the squad. He was quiet and used to just get on with it. Any kid who comes through at club and country is shy, but he has grown into a man.

“But you can see from Gareth now that he plays for one of the best teams in the world. You can only just listen to a person like that and learn.

“He has proven now at his age that this is what he wants to do. He is so dedicated to Wales, he loves meeting up and we treat him like anyone else who walks through the door. But he wants to win and is only used to winning.”

Wed 10 Jun, 2015
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