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Ramsey: Bale's the man for Wales
Published : 07 Sep 2012 09:09:00Rss feed
Wales captain Aaron Ramsey would not swap Gareth Bale for any of Belgium's Premier League stars. Wales head into Friday night's opening World Cup qualifier against Belgium as underdogs. Belgium are widely regarded as favourites to advance from Group A, which also includes Croatia, Serbia, Scotland and Macedonia. Marc Wilmots' side include a plethora of talents plying their trade in the English top flight, including captain Vincent Kompany, Eden Hazard, Thomas Vermaelen, Jan Vertonghen, Marouane Fellaini, Kevin Mirallas and Mousa Dembele. If Wales were to cause an upset and open their campaign with victory at Cardiff City Stadium, Tottenham winger Bale will be a key figure. The 23-year-old has made a steady rather than spectacular start to the new campaign, but Arsenal midfielder Ramsey would not exchange Bale for any of Belgium's top stars. "I personally wouldn't (swap him), no," said Ramsey. "He has been doing what he does for a couple of years, creating and scoring goals and always being a threat to the opposition. "He gets in behind teams and takes on players and has the quality to whip in a cross, or come inside and shoot from distance and cause a problem for the keeper. "He can create things and he has shown that against top quality defenders. He has got a few hat-tricks, including one against Inter Milan where he tore Maicon apart. "He has done it a number of times, he has scored a lot of goals and created a lot of chances and he is a player who could be key to unlocking a defence. "You can't say he has had a slow start to the season, he has created chances in the games I have seen. Tottenham have had a tough start to the season but he has shown on the training pitch what quality he has." Chris Coleman's side have been happy to take on the tag of underdogs against a Belgium team set to field a starting XI worth almost £150million, but Kompany insists there are no favourites in a group where the teams appear evenly matched on paper. The Manchester City skipper said: "Price tags and potential mean nothing, we are in a group where for the first time we have a chance of competing for first place. "But there could be a marginal difference between fourth and first place as the quality of the teams is similar and I would not want to speculate as the task ahead is huge."