Wales vs Türkiye recommended bets
Wales vs Türkiye match preview
Wales fate is now out of their own hands, but this could still be the night they qualify for a third successive European Championships or, alternatively, they’ll be condemned to a place in the play-offs.
In their most-recent home game last October, the Dragons claimed one of the most famous victories of their modern history, beating Croatia 2-1 in Cardiff, with Harry Wilson the scorer of a quick-fire brace.
This saw Rob Page’s side climb up to second in this group, knowing that, should they win both of their fixtures this month, they’d be guaranteed a top two finish.
Well on Saturday, Wales could not fulfil the first half of this equation, held to a 1-1 draw at Vazgen Sargsyan Republican Stadium, in a result that didn’t actually help anyone involved.
Armenia struck first after just five minutes in Yerevan, before the away side got back level courtesy of an own goal in first half stoppage time, but that was the end of the scoring.
So, the only way the Dragons can qualify automatically is by winning this one and hoping Croatia fail to beat Armenia in Zagreb simultaneously, which feels very unlikely.
Thus, instead, they’ll probably be looking towards Thursday’s play-off draw; Wales are set to host either Finland, Ukraine or Iceland in a semi-final in March, before meeting Poland or Estonia in the final.
No such concerns for Türkiye, who secured their own ticket to the European Championships by claiming two wins in October.
In Vincenzo Montella’s maiden match in charge, the Crescent-Stars won 1-0 in Osijek, Barış Alper Yılmaz the only scorer, thereby condemning Croatia to their first-ever defeat in a home Euros qualifier.
Three days later, they hammered Latvia 4-0 in Konya, thereby cementing a spot at a sixth Euro finals, needing a draw here to claim top spot, for what that is worth.
Turkish supporters got an amuse-bouche of what next summer in Germany will be like at the weekend, seeing their team beat the tournament hosts 3-2 in Berlin on Saturday.
Ferdi Kadıoğlu, Kenan Yıldız and Yusuf Sarı scoring at Olympiastadion as Türkiye won on German soil for the first time in 79 years.
So, will the Turks end Wales’ automatic qualification hopes, or will it be another famous night at the Cardiff City Stadium?
Wales team news
Chris Mepham is suspended, having been shown his third caution of the campaign in Yerevan, while captain Aaron Ramsey remains injured.
Amazingly, last month’s win over Croatia was the first time Wales had won a qualification fixture without either Ramsey or Gareth Bale in the starting line-up since a 2-0 victory over Azerbaijan in October 2005.
Without Mepham, Tom Lockyer will slot into the back five, while Ben Davies will be donning the armband.
None of the goalkeepers in the squad, Danny Ward, Wayne Hennessey or Tom King, have played a single minute of club football this season, with Ward once again getting the nod between the sticks.
Rob Page stuck with the same XI that beat Croatia on Saturday, but is likely to change up his attack, with Brennan Johnson returning, in place of David Brooks, while Dan James will also feel he deserves a start.
Of the Welsh team that beat Turkey at Euro 2020, Ward, Joe Rodon, Davies, Connor Roberts and Kieffer Moore will also start here, while Ethan Ampadu, Harry Wilson and Neco Williams came off the bench in Bakı.
Predicted XI (5-2-3): Ward; Roberts, Rodon, Lockyer, Davies, Williams; Ampadu, James; Wilson, Johnson, Moore.
Türkiye team news
This is only Vincenzo Montella’s fourth match in charge of the national team, making his XI harder to predict, especially given that there’s very little on the line for the away side.
Altay Bayındır, who’s still yet to make his Manchester United debut, started in goal at the weekend, but it was Uğurcan Çakır who got the nod in both qualifiers last month.
Experienced attackers Cengiz Ünder and captain Hakan Çalhanoğlu have both pulled out of the squad injured, so Kerem Aktürkoğlu or İrfan Can Kahveci will occupy the number ten role.
With Cenk Tosun and Enes Ünal sidelined, Yusuf Yazıcı will lead the attack.
Predicted XI (4-2-3-1): Çakır; Çelik, Akaydin, Bardakcı, Kadıoğlu; Yüksek, Özcan, Alper Yılmaz, Can Kahveci, Aktürkoğlu; Yazıcı.