Betting Special: Will we see Gareth Bale star for Wales again?

With the Real Madrid man having proved invaluable in Chris Colemen's run to the knockout stages, Al Hain-Cole is backing Bale to strike first at Parc des Princes on Saturday

Joint top scorer in the Euro 2016 group stages and the first player to score in all three matches since Milan Baros and Ruud van Nistelrooy in 2004, Gareth Bale continues to provide the driving force behind Welsh success.

Having scored seven of the Dragons' 11 goals in qualification en route to France, the Real Madrid star will once again take centre stage when they go head-to-head with Northern Ireland for a place in the quarter-finals.

With eight goals to his name in his last nine internationals, Bale is bet365's 3/1 (4.00) favourite to open the scoring in Paris, and available at 5/4 (2.25) to strike anytime.

Considering four of his last six goals for Chris Coleman's men have broken the deadlock, those 3/1 (4.00) first goalscorer odds certainly look appealing in a match more blessed with dogged defenders than exceptional forwards.

Probably the other standout attacker at Parc des Princes, Arsenal's Aaron Ramsey also offers plenty of temptation at 3/1 (4.00) to get on the scoresheet for the second game in success.

Responsible for the winning goal in the opening clash against Slovakia, Hal Robson-Kanu is also available at 3/1 (4.00) to further enhance his modest total of three international goals, while Sam Vokes is priced at 21/10 (3.10) after replacing the unattached striker in attack for the Russia victory.

Meanwhile, Kyle Lafferty remains the Green and White Army's 8/1 (9.00) favourite to open the scoring despite being forced to watch his team's last two matches from the bench, and can be backed at 7/2 (4.50) anytime odds to resurrect the form that saw him score seven goals in nine qualifiers.

Having replaced Lafferty as lone striker recently, Conor Washington is on offer at 9/2 (5.50) anytime odds, while Will Grigg is available at 4/1 (5.00) to live up to his increasingly cult status by firing a first competitive international goal.

However, with set pieces playing a vital role in Northern Ireland's gameplan, odds of 14/1 (15.00) could prove a lucrative long shot on defender Gareth McAuley adding to his impressive eight-goal international haul by scoring for the second time at Euro 2016.

Bale to score first at 3/1 (4.00) for a 2pt stake with Paddy Power

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