World Cup Qatar: Wales and England start TODAY

Millions of Brits will enjoy a festival of World Cup football today as Wales and England both play crunch games.

The Welsh could make history this morning if they beat Iran, while England would qualify for the knockout stages if they beat the USA in tonight’s big game.

Millions of Britons will watch the two games today and many schoolchildren in Wales are having a break from lessons to watch Gareth Bale and his team-mates play at 10am.

An estimated 10,000 English and Welsh fans are in Doha for the games and were drinking late last night ahead of their games tonight.

Wales desperately need a result before they play England next week. If they beat Iran at Ahmed bin Ali Stadium, it would be their first World Cup win in 64 years.

And Welsh fans can wear their rainbow bucket hats after FIFA intervened after Qatari authorities began confiscating them at their latest game amid tensions over their treatment of LGBT people.

England fans will be praying for Harry Kane to be fit again this week after suffering bad luck when he injured his ankle in the Three Lions’ 6-2 win over the Iranians.

Gareth Bale's Wales and Harry Kane's England are both in action today at the Qatar World Cup

Gareth Bale's Wales and Harry Kane's England are both in action today at the Qatar World Cup

Gareth Bale’s Wales and Harry Kane’s England are both in action today at the Qatar World Cup

Bale will make his own history by becoming his country’s most capped footballer against Iran.

Gareth Southgate’s England have their destiny in their own hands and will qualify a game earlier for the group stage if they beat the Americans at the Al Bayt Stadium

Gareth Bale has urged teachers in Wales to give children a ‘little history lesson’ from the World Cup in Qatar.

Wales’ second game at the 2022 World Cup gets underway at 10am GMT on Friday when the kids are in class.

The PA news agency announced earlier this month that children have been given the green light to support Robert Page’s side.

The Welsh Government has left it up to individual schools to decide whether children are allowed to watch the game and Bale wants as many of them as possible to do so.

Bale said: “Because it’s a 10am kick-off in Wales, if I were one of the teachers I’d let them see the game.

‘I hope they do. It’s a historic moment for Wales to be at a World Cup.

“Some of the parents of kids I know all want to see the game but not take them out of school.

“I think a lot of schools will host the game to cheer us on and get behind us.

“It’s a mini history lesson and hopefully a great opportunity for all of them.”

Ales players stand for the national anthem before the Group B match of FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 against USA

Ales players stand for the national anthem before the Group B match of FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 against USA

England's players stand during the national anthem before the start of the Qatar World Cup 2022 Group B football match against Iran

England’s players stand during the national anthem before the start of the Qatar World Cup 2022 Group B football match against Iran

Bale will make his own history by becoming his country’s most capped footballer against Iran.

The 33-year-old captain, who made his debut in 2006 and is Wales’ all-time leading scorer with 41 goals, will win his 110th cap against Iran.

He will overtake Chris Gunter, who will be among the substitutes for Friday’s encounter, and take him to the top himself.

Bale said: “To be honest I wasn’t really focused on the cap thing, just trying to focus on the game.

“On a personal level it’s an amazing achievement, it’s an honor to represent my country so many times.

“But it’s more important that we try to get the win. Hopefully we can and it will make it even more special.”

Joe Allen returned to the main group on Wednesday, recovering from a hamstring problem.

The 72-time Allen, who was injured at Swansea on September 17, had been training alone in Qatar up to that point.

“Joe passed his fitness test so that’s good news,” said manager Page, who will give Kieffer Moore a starting spot after the forward came on from the bench in the 1-1 draw with the United States to help revive Wales trigger .

“He’s fit and can’t wait. We had to hit targets along the way and they hit every target.’

Bale added: “Joe is a great player for us and isn’t getting the recognition he deserves. He’s an important cog in our style of play.

“Having him available is a huge boost for us with two games left. Hopefully he can get in or start and he’ll do what Joe Allen does best and cover every blade of grass.

“I think he has shown again and again how important he is and we hope he still has a few miles to go.”

Harry Kane and Harry Maguire are fit and ready for England’s crucial World Cup match against the USA tonight after recovering from injury and illness.

The duo have given a big boost to manager Gareth Southgate who yesterday insisted the couple will be available.

England captain Kane underwent a physical examination after suffering a blow to the ankle against Iran on Monday but was cleared to resume training on Wednesday.

Southgate said: “Harry is fine, he came through practice without any problems – it would be a brave decision to drop him from the starting team. He’s in a good room. Definitive.

“We managed him a little bit through training last week because he’s been charging so much, so we’re always aware of that. Some players need a little more training, some maybe do half a session, it depends on their individual load.

“Some haven’t played football that much and sometimes need to push a little more, so we always prepare that individually.”

Maguire is also ready to start tonight with an unchanged squad after recovering from an illness that saw him substituted against Iran.

There were concerns the defender was suffering from a concussion, but a thorough examination by England medics and FIFA – who analyzed numerous camera angles – ensured he had not suffered a hit to the head.

“We think part of that was dehydration,” Southgate said. “Due to the concussion awareness, we reviewed all of this very carefully and so did FIFA because it is one of the most important things their medical department does at this tournament. There’s no evidence of that, but you still want to check because he was uncomfortable and why was that?’

James Maddison again did not train with the rest of the squad.

Southgate also confirmed the FA had been in touch with FIFA over their concerns over VAR in the 6-2 win over Iran.

Maguire was denied a penalty after being tackled by Rouzbeh Cheshmi in rugby in the first half, but Iran were later awarded a penalty via VAR after John Stones was caught slightly tugging on striker Morteza Pouraliganji’s shirt.

The English camp were angered by the decision not to award a penalty for the Maguire incident – particularly after an incident in the box involving Kalvin Phillips of England’s 5-0 win over Albania last November was used as an example of a foul in a video , which was shown to the officials before the World Cup. This had led to fears that England could be unfairly attacked by referees in Qatar.

The FA have submitted a report to FIFA and are awaiting their response.

Stones said: “We sat in a pre-tournament refereeing meeting and we shared certain things and I get frustrated when those don’t get confirmed. It’s difficult because we’re trying to adapt our game to the way they want to reef things. I understand they have a super tough job these days with all the cameras, but there needs to be some clarity.

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-11468239/Word-Cup-Qatar-Wales-England-kick-TODAY.html?ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490&ito=1490 World Cup Qatar: Wales and England start TODAY

Emma Colton

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