Branislav Ivanovic: It will be a pleasure to face Gareth Bale

Branislav Ivanovic insists it will be a "pleasure" to come up against Gareth Bale should he feature for Wales against Serbia

branislav ivanovic
Chelsea defender Branislav Ivanović (right)

Branislav Ivanovic insists it will be a “pleasure” to come up against Gareth Bale should the winger feature for Wales against Serbia on Tuesday.

The 24-year-old, who was an unused substitute in Wales’ World Cup qualifier defeat by Macedonia on Friday, has been given the all-clear after he underwent a groin scan on Monday.

Wales boss Chris Coleman revealed that the former Tottenham star will not start Tuesday’s clash against Serbia, but could feature as a substitute.

And Chelsea defender Ivanovic says he will relish the chance to play against Bale should the £85.3m winger make an appearance.

“Bale is one of the best players in the world, everyone knows that, but it is not just him,” Ivanovic said. “There are other great players in the Wales squad and they have played really well in some games.

“Bale is one of their main players but we do not know whether he will play or how long he will play, but we have to be ready to face a side with him or without him, and we are.

“It’s difficult to stop him, he is a player who is always hard to mark.

“It is a pleasure to face the best players, but for us it is important to play as a team as one individual cannot make that much of a difference over a game.”

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