Gareth Bale: We can’t be ‘dreaming’ of another Euros semi-final - we’ve got to focus on Denmark

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Gareth Bale: We can’t be ‘dreaming’ of another Euros semi-final - we’ve got to focus on Denmark
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 (POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
(POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

Gareth Bale has told his Wales teammates to focus on beating Denmark on Saturday before they start “dreaming” of another run to the semi-finals of the European Championships.

Wales meet the Danes in the last-16 of Euro 2020 on Saturday and there is growing optimism among supporters after the full shape of the knockout draw became clear following the conclusion of the group stage.

Like England, Wales are most certainly on the easier side of the draw, given that they cannot face Belgium, France, Italy, Portugal or Spain until the final.

Victory over Denmark would see Wales face either Czech Republic or the Netherlands for a place in last four. But while that possibility has got fans dreaming of another run to the semi-finals, after their epic ride at Euro 2016, Bale wants his team to take it one game at a time.

“We are just thinking of the next game, we don’t need to be dreaming about anything other than playing the game tomorrow,” said Bale.

“I think we’ve had experience in the past where we know to take each game as it comes. That’s the most important thing for us.

“We are just looking forward to tomorrow’s game. We don’t need to look any further than a very good Denmark team and we will be doing all we can to try and stop them.”

Wales go into the match in an unusual situation given the swell of support behind their Danish opponents, who have captured the hearts of football fans around the world after overcoming the emotional turmoil that accompanied Christian Eriksen’s collapse in their opening game of the tournament.

Eriksen collapsed on the pitch during the eventual defeat to Finland after suffering a cardiac arrest, but Denmark have somehow managed to keep playing and they now find themselves in the last 16.

“Us players, we have been in this situation before where teams are favourites, where they’ve been supported more,” said Bale.

“Against Turkey [in the group stages], I think they had 18,000 in the stadium.

“So, when we come to kick-off [against] Denmark, it’ll just be us players on the pitch and we’ll be focusing on the game and that alone.”

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