Bale to set Wales men's record against Iran

Gareth Bale of Wales reacts during the Wales Press Conference at the Main Media Center on November 24, 2022 in Doha, Qatar.

Wales face Iran in a crucial second World Cup match knowing victory would significantly enhance their chances of reaching the second round in Qatar.

Robert Page’s side started with a 1-1 draw against the United States, while Iran were thrashed 6-2 by England.

Captain Gareth Bale will overtake team-mate Chris Gunter as Wales’ most-capped man if he plays on Friday.

“It’s an amazing achievement, it’s an honour to represent my country so many times,” said Bale, who has 109 caps.

“But it’s more important that we try and get the victory. Hopefully we can and it’ll make it even more special.

“It will be a difficult game versus Iran – they are a very good team. They are here for a reason, but of course we believe we can beat them.”

Bale, 33, is already Wales’ all-time leading scorer in men’s football and he extended his record to 41 goals with a late penalty against the USA on Monday.

That match at the Ahmad Bin Ali Stadium, also the venue for the Iran fixture, was Wales’ first in a World Cup since 1958.

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