Earnie hoping for Welsh miracle

Last updated : 10 October 2003 By Michael Morris
Robert Earnshaw could start for Wales against Serbia tomorrow. Injuries to several players inc Simon Davies and Robbie Savanage in midfield and Mark Hughes' reluctance to play players already on a yellow card could mean Earnie and young Villa player Rob Edwards could get a start.

Earnshaw like the rest of Wales is hoping Azerbaijan can pull off the shock of the tournament by getting a result in Italy, a draw for the Azerri at the Azurri combined with a win for Wales would see Mark Hughes and his Merry Men in the finals next year. Most likely though is the play offs where the draw is being made at 11:15am BST on Monday. Wales could face any number of teams inc possible England, Ireland, Scotland, Holland and Spain.

"Azerbaijan were not that bad at all when we played them, they pulled off a great draw in Serbia and beat them at home, which really helped us," said Earnshaw

"They may be bottom of the group but they were dangerous going forward, and could do us another favour now. We are still confident. We would have prayed for this position at the start of the qualifiers, so let's go out and enjoy the situation we are in now."

Daniel Gabbidon will start the game, possibly alongside Mark Delaney. Andy Melville, on a yellow card, will be rested.