Euro 2016: Wales 'can cope' without suspended Ben Davies

Ben Davies
Ben Davies joined Tottenham in a swap deal for Iceland's Gylfi Sigurdsson

Wales' players are confident they can cope with the loss of defender Ben Davies as they bid to reach the final of the European Championship.

Along with Arsenal midfielder Aaron Ramsey, Davies is suspended for the semi-final after being booked in the 3-1 win over Belgium.

"Ben has been our standout performer in the tournament so far, he will be a big miss for us," said James Chester.

"But we have the squad now, we have the strength in depth."

And with BBC columnist John Hartson suggesting Wales may even be favourites against Portugal on Wednesday in the semi-final, Chester added: "Obviously Ben and Aaron have started every game here for us so far.

"Aaron has got the undoubted ability, but how much work he puts in maybe gets overlooked.

"We will obviously miss them, but we have the strength and players playing at the top level so hopefully it won't hamper us too much."

Squad game

Media playback is not supported on this device

Euro 2016: Wales 3-1 Belgium highlights

Chester feels Wales' fringe players at the tournament could now step into the limelight at just the right time as they prepare to face Portugal in Lyon.

"All the lads who haven't played, it has been difficult for them, but they have been great," he told BBC Radio Wales.

"I know myself [from not playing as much as he would like with club side West Brom] how difficult it is to be watching every week so their attitude has been great towards the ones who have been playing.

"They have looked after themselves really well in training so whoever comes in I am sure they will do a good job."

West Ham defender James Collins or Fulham's Jazz Richards is likely to replace Chester with Jonny Williams, Dave Edwards and Premier League winner Andy King vying to replace Ramsey.

Harsh yellow cards

Aaron Ramsey
Aaron Ramsey would be available for the final if Wales make it

Defender Neil Taylor feels both Ramsey and Davies were unfortunate to pick up their second bookings of the tournament, with Portugal midfielder William Carvalho also out of the last-four game.

"It is a difficult one that, when we had the talk prior to the tournament, we believed that bookings would be wiped out by the quarters - the yellow cards - but we found out this week they don't," he said.

"It is so difficult not to pick up yellow cards with referees that like giving them out.

"With a game moving at that sort of pace I think they could have been more lenient, knowing they could possibly be suspended."

Captain will be fit

Media playback is not supported on this device

Wales captain Ashley Williams equalises against Belgium

Wales skipper Ashley Williams had his left arm in a sling as he left the ground following the victory over Belgium.

He was a doubt for the game after suffering a shoulder injury in the 1-0 win over Northern Ireland, but he assured reporters he would be fit to face Portugal in the semi-final.

"It's okay, it's fine. I've just got the sling on because it keeps clicking and it's painful, but this just eases it a little bit," he said.

"But i'll fine I think. I have to give a lot of credit to the medical team because I was afraid I wouldn't be able to play tonight and they've done an unbelievable job.

"It's a lot better than it was after the last game."

Confidence so high

Media playback is not supported on this device

Euro 2016: Sam Vokes header seals historic Wales victory

Despite beginning the tournament as huge outsiders, Wales are now dreaming of winning the European Championship and that ambition extends beyond the terraces and the pubs and clubs back home.

"Are we thinking of winning it now? Yes, of course. That is the next goal," said Burnley's Sam Vokes.

"Sounds crazy but it is a genuine thing, and we are obviously looking to get into the final."

Defender Neil Taylor added: "It is obvious to say that we have the belief we can beat anybody, we have always said that, we are not lying when we say it."

The battle of Ronaldo and Bale

Bale v Ronaldo
Bale and Ronaldo play together for Real Madrid

Wednesday's semi final will see superstar team-mates Christiano Ronaldo and Gareth Bale going head-to-head just over a month after they inspired club side Real Madrid to a second Champions League title in three seasons.

Swansea defender Taylor feels Bale can be a match for his club colleague.

"It is good that two of the world's best players can meet at this part of the tournament, which is why we are so happy for Gareth," he explained.

"We have managed to get him to this part of the tournament where he can really affect games and show what he is all about, but I think we showed against Belgium that we are about more than just that [Bale] and we are definitely a team."

More from BBC Wales Sport
Euro 2016 catch-up: The night Wales made history
Euro 2016: 'Wales win over Belgium dwarfs other achievements'
Euro 2016: Wales can beat Portugal without me - Ramsey

Top Stories