Oct 11, 2013 at 7.45pm UK at ​Millennium Stadium
Wales
1-0
MacedoniaMacedonia
Church (67')
John (58'), Taylor (75')
FT(HT: 0-0)

Sikov (80')

Preview: Wales vs. Macedonia

Sports Mole previews Friday's World Cup Group A qualifier between Wales and Macedonia.

Wales will enter Friday's 2014 World Cup qualifier against Macedonia knowing that they will soon have to operate without the services of Cardiff City forward Craig Bellamy.

The 34-year-old, who has scored 19 goals in 76 caps during a 15-year career with the national team, announced on Tuesday that he will retire from international football following the clash with Belgium next week.

Wales have had a disappointing qualification campaign and currently sit bottom of Group A on six points, having lost six of their eight matches.

They might not have much to play for over the next six or so days, but they will be intent on moving off the bottom of the group, which would occur should they register three points against Macedonia on Friday.

Macedonia, meanwhile, sit one point above Wales in fifth position. They will take added confidence into the match, however, having recorded a 2-1 win on their own patch when the two nations met last month.

Wales boss Chris Coleman, whose position is in doubt following a poor campaign, has seen 10 of his initial 23-man squad pull out through injury over the past week, with Swansea City defender Ashley Williams the latest to miss out.

Real Madrid winger Gareth Bale is also unavailable as he continues to battle a muscular injury, while Joe Allen, Joe Ledley, Andrew Crofts, Adam Matthews and Jack Collison are also among the absentees.

However, it is believed that Coleman will hold talks with West Ham United defender James Collins on Wednesday evening in a bid to repair the fractured relationship between the two. As it stands, an understrength defence is likely to include Chris Gunter, Danny Collins, Jazz Richards and Neil Taylor.

The visitors, meanwhile, will be led by Napoli striker Goran Pandev, who has scored 26 goals for his country. Experienced midfield duo Darko Tasevski and Nikola Gligorov are also expected to be named in the starting lineup.

Recent form

Wales: WLDLL

Macedonia: LLWWL

Possible starting lineups

Wales: Myhill; Gunter, D Collins, Richards, Taylor; Ramsey, Vaughan, King; Bellamy, Vokes, Church

Macedonia: Pacovski; Noveski, Sikov, Grncarov, Mojsov; Tasevski, Demiri, Gligorov, Babunski; Pandev, Ibraimi

Sports Mole says: 1-0

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Wales national team manager Chris Coleman looks on during the International Friendly match between Wales v Ireland at the Cardiff City Stadium on August 14, 2013
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