Wales must keep emotions in check in another "Battle of Britain"

Wales must control their emotions if they want to prevail in their second "Battle of Britain" match at Euro 2016, a last 16 game against Northern Ireland, manager Chris Coleman said on Friday.

Coleman's team were beaten 2-1 by England in the group stage despite taking the lead, and Coleman said while his team around superstar Gareth Bale fought well in that game they must now do better when they have possession on Saturday at the Parc des Princes.

"It was emotions, a derby. But tomorrow we must take the emotions out of it. You need emotion but if there is too much of it your game plan is out of the window," Coleman said.

"The message is that whether it is Turkey or Northern Ireland, they play in different shirts but it is irrelevant where they come from. We have to stick to our game plan and do what we are good at."

However, Northern Ireland counterpart Michaqel O'Neill was not so sure as he named the duel a "cup tie."

"I want my team to play with lots of emotion and to understand the significance of the game. They can't play without emotion. It will be a big factor in the game," he said.

"We understand the significance of playing another home nation. But the price is massive."

Coleman acknowledged again that Real Madrid's Gareth Bale and Arsenal's Aaron Ramsey are great assets to have but he praised the overall team effort and dedication which will be needed again to beat Northern Ireland.

"They are difficult to break down and don't give away easy goals. They defend deep and compact and are dangerous on the counter. But we concentrate on ourselves and don't want to get sucked into anyone else's game," Coleman said.

Captain Ashley Williams insisted that Wales can also be physical and fight apart from playing well.

Wales are considered favourites while Northern Ireland are ready to contain Bale and everyone else, and hope for another great showing from goalkeeper Michael McGovern - possibly in a shoot-out - in the return to the stadium where he frustrated world champions Germany on Monday in a narrow 1-0 defeat for Northern Ireland.

"If it comes to that (penalties) the team are well prepared and Michael could play a huge role in that. He is in brilliant form, and the team has confidence knowing Michael has the form he is in," O'Neill said.

"We need Gareth Bale to have a quiet night and its up to us to make that happen."

Both sides expect a great atmosphere from passionate fans so that both British teams can show their best in Europe in the aftermath of the Brexit vote result.

"We expect a good old-fashioned British game tomorrow night," O'Neill said.

Last update: Fri, 24/06/2016 - 20:02
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