Wales boss Chris Coleman expects physical battle with Republic of Ireland

Wales boss Chris Coleman is expecting another bruising encounter when his side take on the Republic of Ireland in their “all or nothing” World Cup qualifying decider next week.

Ireland travel to Cardiff to face Wales on Monday, live on Sky Sports Football, with the winner assured of at least second place in Group D and a potential play-off spot.

Wales hold a one-point advantage over their opponents in the group and need only a draw to secure a top-two finish.

The reverse fixture in March ended in a hard-fought goalless draw, in which Ireland captain Seamus Coleman had his leg broken in a challenge with Neil Taylor, and Coleman is expecting another physically demanding match at the Principality Stadium.

“We know what the Republic are good at,” said Coleman. “But this is the last game of the campaign, all or nothing for both teams.

“So even without the unfortunate incident in Dublin with Tayls and Seamus, this was always going to be a game where there will be two teams locking horns.

“There will be lots of contact in the game, it will be physical, good players, and not much in it.

“But even before what happened (in Dublin) it was a physical game and we expected it to be. We were all absolutely devastated at what happened.

“Seamus Coleman is such a good player and you never want to see that happen, but there won’t be any mention of the unfortunate incident.

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“We’re just going to go with our game-plan and make sure we’re 100 per cent focused on doing what we’re good at.”

After successive victories over Austria, Moldova and Georgia, Wales could make it four wins in a row for the first time in 36 years.

Wales will be without injured talisman Gareth Bale against Ireland but Coleman is confident his side will get the result they need without the Real Madrid forward.

“It’s all about performance and the game-plan and executing that,” he said.

“The last three games we’ve had, we had to wait until the last 15 minutes – against Moldova away, we beat Austria with something special, and we’ve gone to Georgia, a tough place, and ground it out to get a result.

“That’s what it’s about. It’s not always going to be that you win two or three nil, you play fantastic football – Baleo (Gareth Bale) puts in the top corner and Rambo (Aaron Ramsey) runs the game.”

Source.