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 Wales football news - November 2002.
FAW delight.
Three games into the Euro 2004 campaign and the FAW are delighted with progress made under Mark Hughes.

Hughes' current contract runs out at the end 2004, but he is yet to finalise a new deal that will keep him as manager until 2008.

The FAW are waiting for Hughes to put pen to paper but stress that there is no problem, and that everything has been agreed.

The deal is reported to be worth around 750,000 over the four years.

"We are all delighted with what he has done for Welsh football. He has done everything we hoped for." - David Collins (FAW).

Friday, November 29th 2002.



Savage committed.
With questions being asked about Robbie Savage commitment to Wales, manager Mark Hughes has jumped to the player's defence.

Savage who withdrew from last week's game due to injury has been in inspirational form for Wales over the past months culminating with an excellent display against Italy.

Many questioned Savage's commitment last week but Hughes has stressed that the player is a first-class professional and fully committed to the cause.

"Robbie wanted to play for us, We had a look at him, he was sore and we felt he wouldn't have been able to play on the Wednesday." - Mark Hughes.

Wednesday, November 27th 2002.



Feet on the ground.
Three victories in the first three games have put Wales' five points clear of their nearest rivals in Group 9.

Wales' next competitive game is at the end of March this time at home against Azerbaijan with a trip to group rivals Yugoslavia four days later. Positive results in those games will surely put us a step closer to Portugal, with one foot already on the plane.

Winger Ryan Giggs stressing on his return from Baku that we are still a long way from Portugal.

"Past experience has taught me that anything can happen in qualifying. Until we mathematically qualify, I'm not going to think about how close we are to making it." - Ryan Giggs

Friday, November 22nd 2002.



Get the job done.
Wales fly out next Monday full of confidence ahead of the Euro 2004 qualifier against Azerbaijan.

Robbie Savage says he cannot wait to meet up with the squad, and has emphasised that morale and team spirit is high after the victories against Finland and Italy.

The team needs to do a professional job out in Baku and come home having taken something from the game.

"Every one of us will be looking forward to meeting up again." - Robbie Savage

Monday, November 11th 2002.



Hughes disappointment.
Mark Hughes has uttered his disappointment at the FIFA decision to allow players to play for their clubs on the Sunday before the Azerbaijan game.

A further blow is the loss of Nathan Blake who faces a six weeks on the sidelines with an ankle injury.

It will be a nervous time for the manager and not exactly ideal preparation for the vital Euro 2004 qualifier. A win in Baku would take Wales five points clear at the top of Group 9.

"This has certainly not helped us and now it's a case of keeping your fingers crossed that nobody gets injured." - Mark Hughes.

Saturday, November 9th 2002.





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