Wales not just about Gareth Bale: Roy Hodgson
Roy Hodgson has warned that it will be a mistake to view Wales as a one-man team when England come up against Gareth Bale & Co at Euro 2016 in June
Paris: Roy Hodgson has warned that it will be a mistake to view Wales as a one-man team when England come up against Gareth Bale & Co at Euro 2016 in June. Bale scored seven of Wales' 11 goals in the qualifying campaign — Chris Coleman's side only conceded four in 10 matches — but the England manager said his opposite number will have contingency plans in mind if something happens to the Real Madrid star.
The Euro 2016 groups are displayed behind the trophy in Paris on Saturday. Pic/AFP
The British teams meet on June 16 in Lens for their second match of Group B, with Hodgson's side playing Russia first in Marseille on June 11 and Slovakia the final opponents in St Etienne on Monday June 20.
"If people are going to tell me that Wales are a team who relies on one man then I don't accept that — you can never build a team around one player," Hodgson said. "At the moment Gareth Bale might be scoring a goal a game but come June that might not be the case or he might be injured.
"I have a certain experience of that happening and disrupting your plans — Chris has been able to put together a more settled team than us. We have had a number of our players not available through injury. You cannot rely on a fixed team."
Hodgson has been buoyed by top-level backing from Football Association chief executive Martin Glenn that he is the man the governing body want to take England to the 2018 World Cup in Russia, if his team can demonstrate progress at next summer's European Championships.
No specific target has been set — it is thought that reaching the quarter-finals with England viewed as playing good football would be viewed as enough progress.