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Wales have followed protocol over Aaron Ramsey’s Wembley absence – Ryan Giggs

Wales v Hungary – UEFA Euro 2020 Qualifying – Group E – Cardiff City Stadium
(Image credit: Nick Potts)

Ryan Giggs insists Wales have followed the rules over Aaron Ramsey’s Wembley absence, despite other Juventus players turning up to play for their countries after positive coronavirus tests at the Turin club.

Ramsey will sit out Thursday’s friendly against England after the entire Juventus squad went into “fiduciary isolation” when two members of the Serie A club’s non-playing staff tested positive for Covid-19.

But the Italian media reported on Monday that six players – Cristiano Ronaldo, Paulo Dybala, Juan Cuadrado, Rodrigo Bentancur, Merih Demiral and Danilo – had left the Juventus ‘bubble’ to play for their countries over the next few days.

Ronaldo posted pictures of himself on social media training ahead of Portugal’s friendly against Spain in Lisbon on Wednesday.

“Aaron has just followed the protocol he was told,” said Wales manager Giggs, who expects Ramsey to join up with the squad on Thursday and be available for the Nations League away games in the Republic of Ireland and Bulgaria.

“We’ve gone along with that and we expect him to be available for Sunday and Wednesday.

“We’ve backed that (protocol) up, I don’t know about any other players’ situation or the situations of any other countries.

Ryan Giggs File Photo

Wales manager Ryan Giggs has defended the absence of Aaron Ramsey from the friendly against England (Ben Birchall/PA)

“We are finalising when he will come over and everything is in hand, and I’m looking forward to him meeting up.”

England and Wales have not met since Euro 2016 when the Three Lions won a group game 2-1 in Lens.

Wales have not beaten England since 1984 – their final meeting in the British Home Championship when a Mark Hughes header settled the game in the Dragons’ favour – and last won at Wembley in 1977.

But Wales are on an eight-game unbeaten run and avoiding defeat in the next week would eclipse their best 10-game sequence between 2001 and 2003.

“We’ve got great momentum going into the game and we want to keep that momentum up,” Giggs said. “We realise it’s a tough game and England have got some quality players.

“They could pick two or three teams and we know whatever team they put out, it’s going to be a difficult match for us. But we’re excited about the game and it will be a great occasion for our players.”

Wales are without Ramsey, Gareth Bale and Joe Allen, while Manchester United winger Daniel James has been suffering from a stomach bug.

But James will be fit to start and Giggs said all Wales players have tested negative for coronavirus.

Manchester City v Manchester United – Carabao Cup – Semi Final – Second Leg – Etihad Stadium

Manchester United winger Daniel James is expected to play against England after recovering from a stomach bug (Martin Rickett/PA)

“I’ve got a great group of players and I’m happy with the players I’ve got,” he said.

“The strength in depth is going to be tested, but that’s why we give players chances and then it’s up to them to stay in the team.

“We have to play this game but my priority is to do well in the Nations League.

“We’ve got three games in a short space of time so there has to be a bit of juggling. We’ve got to have one eye on Sunday.”