Flynn delighted by youngsters

First published in Sport

WALES Under-21 boss Brian Flynn believes the country has a bright footballing future, thanks to a "golden batch’’ of youngsters.

Flynn took Wales within a play-off of a place at the last European Under-21 Championship and they now top their qualifying group for next year's tournament in Denmark.

With no automatic qualification for group winners, Wales know they need three points from their last two games against Hungary and Italy next month to book a place in the two-legged play-off round once again.

Some recent Under-21 internationals, notably Gareth Bale, Jack Collison and Aaron Ramsey, have become Premier League stars while others such as Wayne Hennessey, Chris Gunter and Lewin Nyatanga are now established senior internationals.

Flynn feels he now has plenty more talent on his hands and is excited about the national team's future.

The former Wrexham and Swansea boss said: "Working with elite players like these has been very rewarding.

"We have had a golden batch come through - you don't often get a Bale and a Ramsey in such short space of time.

"They will be big players in Europe, never mind the UK.

"Now I have got some more good young players coming through and I am very excited by them.’’ Flynn's side have their first run-out of the season tomorrow as they travel to Malta for a friendly in Ta'Qali.

It will be their final match before their Euro qualification campaign concludes with testing back-to-back trips to Hungary and Italy in little over three weeks' time.

Flynn believes qualification would give the Welsh game a huge shot in the arm.

He said: "It would be the biggest thing that has happened to Wales for a long time.

"On the back of the last campaign, we were a whisker away from shocking England in the play-offs.

"That was very close and I think this group can better that.

"We are capable of getting the three points we need from those two games, we are set up to score goals.

"But first it is important we get the squad together this week, it is a new season.

"Malta is a lovely island and it is a game we are looking forward to.’’

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