World Cup qualifier draw: Rob Page says Wales will be honored by Belgium

Rob Page caretaker of Wales

Wales caretaker manager Rob Page believes World Cup rivals Belgium will have “more respect” for him following recent meetings between the two countries.

The 2022 World Cup European Qualifying Draw is Monday in Group E with the world’s top ranked Belgium, Wales, Czech Republic, Belarus and Estonia attracting teams.

But Belgium have failed to beat Wales in all four of their matches since October 2013, when Wales won two and drew two of them, a memorable 3-1 victory over Lille in the Euro 2016 quarter-finals.

Page has highlighted Wales’ recent strong record against Belgium

Page, who continued to represent Ryan Giggs, said: “Belgium are a straight-out team, but if you look at the last four games we have a good record against them.

“I think they will look at us like a nation going forward.

“They will be fully aware of our results and will probably look at us with a little more respect.

“Belgium speaks for itself. They have the talent of talented footballers and managers. [Roberto Martinez] Well known to fans in Wales.

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Highlights of the UEFA Nations League B4 Group match between Wales and Finland

“It’s from them that Swansea got the identity of the developing players and the philosophy of how the club wants to play, whatever the manager comes from.

“He’s become an international manager and his record is very good. But we’ve got a bunch of players who will only get better with our winning culture and mentality.”

Following their success in the League of Nations this fall, Wales have been almost assured of a place in the World Cup play-place.

They won five of their last six games to advance to the top tier of European football and qualified for the World Cup in March.

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Highlights of the Nations League Group B4 match between Wales and the Republic of Ireland

The Czech Republic also got a promotion in League-A by finishing above Scotland and, like Wales, has qualified for the delayed European Championships next summer.

“The Czech Republic is in good form and has always strongly opposed,” Page added.

“We played Belarus [in a friendly] Just 12 months ago, it was my second game with the first team and we had a positive result.

“We have to show every team, whether it’s Estonia, Belarus or Belgium, with equal respect.

“It’s a fun group in all of this. It’s about our level of performance and if we can sustain it with the latest camps and games, we should be fine.”

Page took charge last month as Wales beat the Republic of Ireland and Finland to win their Nations League group.

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Highlights of the friendly match between Wales and USA

Giggs was absent from the November Games in Wales after being arrested on November 1 on suspicion of assaulting his girlfriend at his Manchester home.

The 47-year-old Ass, who denies all allegations of assault, has been suspended until 1 February during an ongoing investigation by Greater Manchester Police.

Page said: “Things are going the same way as they did in the last camp. I have been asked to work here for a minute and nothing has changed.

“I’ve talked to Ryan since last camp. I’ll be in touch now but if I’m honest the planning has started.

“We’ve got a lot to plan for in March with just two qualifiers and a friendly game, but there’s also the Euro in the summer.

“So much remains to be done and we will meet in the next two weeks to make sure it’s all planned and organized.”

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