Evans holds out for World Cup dream

Lee Evans
Lee Evans

Lee Evans is confident Wales can complete their World Cup qualifying campaign in style this weekend – even without injured star Gareth Bale.

Wales need to finish with wins against both Georgia away on Friday night and Ireland at home next Monday to finish in the top two of Group D – and a likely play-off berth.

They’ll have to do it the hard way without talisman Bale, but Evans – who was named in the provisional squad for the double-header only to miss the final cut – is remaining upbeat.

“Hopefully the lads can get six points and book us a place in Russia,” Evans told the Wigan Post.

“The way the manager sets the side up, I don’t think we’re afraid of anyone.

“I personally think it’s better when teams come on to us, which creates a lot more space at the back to run into.

“The Georgia game will probably be a similar test to what we faced on against Northampton with Wigan last week – 10 men behind the ball and needing to break them down.

“Hopefully it will go down to the Ireland game, the last qualifier, a full house in Cardiff – the place’ll be rocking.”

The upside of Evans missing the international cut is his availability for Wigan’s game at Scunthorpe on Saturday.

And having been called-up for the previous double-header against Moldova and Austria last month, he says his appetite has been whetted for future involvement.

“I didn’t quite make this one, but it was great to be involved in the last squad,” added the on-loan Wolves midfielder.

“Training with the likes of Bale and (Aaron) Ramsay can only help you improve as a player.

“It was a great experience for me and hopefully I can be involved again in the coming months.

“Obviously there’s a World Cup coming up at the end of the season, and that’s an incentive for me to keep working as hard as I can.

“Playing in a World Cup is something you can only dream of. Obviously Wales have a long way to go yet before we can start to think about that.

“But it’s something to aim for – and there’d be nothing better than playing in a World Cup.”