GARETH BALE has hit back at Italy manager Roberto Mancini after he compared Wales to Stoke City.
Wales visit Rome on Sunday and a win over Italy will see them top Group A.
Roberto Mancini’s comments produced a cheeky smile from Wales star Gareth Bale
Mancini did compliment Wales amid his comparison to Stoke
And though the Azzuri are unbeaten in 25 games and beat both Turkey and Switzerland 3-0, Mancini is still expecting a tough game against Wales.
In his pre-match press conference he said: “Stoke had a very tough style of play, they were a very tough nut to crack.
“It will be a very difficult match from a physical perspective because they are a powerful side like Stoke, but they are also very technical.
“Wales have players like [Joe] Allen, [Gareth] Bale and [Daniel] James. They have got some quality and skilful players.”
Bale was alerted to the comments, which brought a smile to his face.
And he responded: “I never knew Stoke were that good.”
⚽Get ALL of the latest Wales news and updates from Euro 2020
The Wales skipper delivered a rousing speech to his team-mates on the pitch in Baku after the full-time whistle, and is full of energy and optimism after Wales all but secured qualification.
He and his team-mates will hope to repeat their heroics of 2016, when they reached the semi-final after beating Belgium and Northern Ireland in the knock-out rounds.
⚽ Read our Football live blog for the very latest news from around the grounds