Wales boss Robert Page wants clarity over severity of Neco Williams injury

By Sports Desk May 25, 2023

Wales boss Robert Page wants clarity from Nottingham Forest over Neco Williams’ injury ahead of next month’s Euro 2024 qualifiers.

Full-back Williams was ruled out for the rest of the Premier League season after breaking his jaw against Brighton on April 26.

But Forest have not put a time frame on the 22-year-old’s recovery and Page wants to know the extent of the injury before naming his squad on Tuesday for games against Armenia and Turkey.

“I think there’s conversations to be had with ourselves and the club, both medical teams,” Page told BBC Wales.

“The squad is going to be announced next week.

“We will have conversations in the meantime and see where we are at with that before we make that decision.”

Page was critical of Forest in March when Williams’ team-mate Brennan Johnson withdrew from the squad to take on Croatia and Latvia, suggesting the striker had not been given enough help to be fit for international duty.

As reported by the PA news agency in March, Bournemouth forward David Brooks will be part of the summer camp after returning to action following cancer treatment.

Brooks made his first start since September 2021 against Manchester United on Saturday after four substitute appearances for the Cherries this season.

The 25-year-old was diagnosed with stage two Hodgkin lymphoma in October 2021 and announced he was cancer free in May 2022.

“I am pleased for him because he’s had a long journey,” said Page.

“I got a bit excited in March. I tried to get him on camp then because you want your best players around you. He definitely falls into that category.

“We knew we had to manage it. You don’t go through what he’s gone through and not have little setbacks.

“Bournemouth have been incredible with the way they have handled it and got him back up to speed. It’s great that we have got him available.”

Wales made a positive start to Euro 2024 qualifying with four points from two games, drawing away to World Cup semi-finalists Croatia before beating Latvia at home.

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    County’s 3-2 cinch Premiership victory on Sunday was the Dingwall club’s first win over Rangers in 25 attempts and dented the Light Blues’ title hopes.

    Rangers are four points behind Celtic, with their game in hand against Dundee at Dens Park getting the green light to go ahead after two previous postponements due to an unplayable pitch.

    Clement’s side have won just two in seven and taken four points from their last 12 but the Belgian was keen to isolate the County display as the first of its kind with deficiencies in structure, organisation and basics since he took over in October and insists such days happen at every club, including all-conquering Manchester City.

    “They were very disappointed in themselves and that is a positive thing,” said Clement, who revealed left-back Ridvan Yilmaz remains out along with midfielder Mohamed Diomande, while defender Leon Balogun is a doubt with illness.

    “I had some clear words after the game and then we had a good debriefing on what went wrong – individually and collectively – and how we can make it better.

    “It was an off-day.

    “It is the first time in six months that I have seen my team like that and I was disappointed. But I think every manager has moments like that, even with teams that win amazing things.

    “I have been watching the series of Man City’s treble last year and I saw quite a few of those moments.

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    “It’s not something that you want, not the players or manager, fans.

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    “Motherwell (lost 2-1) was a freak accident, we could have won 6-1, we had a lot of chances but it wasn’t our lucky day.

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    “But this one on Sunday was a bad one, that is true, so we have to react tomorrow.

    “Sometimes you need a knock on your head to remind you what you need to do to be strong.”

    Clement was pleased to see that the match between Dundee and Rangers is set to go ahead at the third time of asking after a pitch inspection at Dens Park.

    Rangers have already made the trip to the Scot Foam Stadium twice – on March 17 and April 10 – only for the pitch to be deemed unplayable, and contingency plans had been drawn up for the game to be moved to St Johnstone’s McDiarmid Park if the pitch failed its latest inspection.

    He said: “People who decided to play at Dens Park are sure that there will be a game tomorrow and that is a very positive thing.

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