Bale fit to face Croatia, insists Wales boss Coleman

The winger has been in scintillating form for Tottenham this season, but he was forced off halfway through Friday's 2-1 victory against Scotland.
Gareth Bale has been declared fit for Wales as it prepares to face Croatia in Tuesday’s World Cup qualifier.

The 23-year-old Bale was substituted midway through the 2-1 win over Scotland on Friday after aggravating a previous ankle injury and failing to fully overcome an illness.

Wales manager Coleman had earlier insisted that Bale would not be risked for the clash with Igor Stimac’s men if not fully ready to go, but he revealed on Monday that the Tottenham star is fit for the Group A game.

"He's trained well so I think he's in a lot better nick than he was going into the Scotland game. I think he should be OK," Coleman told Sky Sports.

A loss on Tuesday would see Wales fall 10 points behind second-placed Croatia in its quest to qualify for the 2014 World Cup, and Coleman believes his squad will have to be at its very best against a side boasting the likes of Real Madrid playmaker Luka Modric.

"Croatia have impressed me the most - offensively they're very aggressive and they're quite physical," Coleman said. "And obviously they've got a guy in the middle of the park, Luka Modric, who would grace any team.

"This will be a very tough game for different reasons than Friday, but we've got to play our own game. We passed the ball very well at Hampden Park and were very exciting. We have to have that same philosophy.

"Sometimes you get results and sometimes you don't, but the important thing for Wales is that we've got a style of play we're trying to evolve."

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