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Welsh FA CEO Noel Mooney waiting for clarity on World Cup play-offs following Ukraine request

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Wales’ World Cup play-off against Austria will be delayed should FIFA postpone Scotland’s clash with Ukraine, Football of Wales chief executive Noel Mooney has suggested. Photo: PA

Wales’ World Cup play-off against Austria will be delayed should FIFA postpone Scotland’s clash with Ukraine, Football of Wales chief executive Noel Mooney has suggested. Photo: PA

Wales’ World Cup play-off against Austria will be delayed should FIFA postpone Scotland’s clash with Ukraine, Football of Wales chief executive Noel Mooney has suggested. Photo: PA

Wales' World Cup play-off against Austria will be delayed should FIFA postpone Scotland's clash with Ukraine, Football Association of Wales chief executive Noel Mooney has suggested.

FIFA confirmed on Thursday that Ukraine have requested a postponement of their play-off semi-final in Glasgow on March 24 following Russia's invasion of their country.

Ukraine or Scotland are due to visit the winners of the Wales-Austria game on March 29 to determine a place at the World Cup in Qatar later this year.

"We are planning to play against Austria on March 24 at the Cardiff City Stadium," Irishman Mooney, who was interim FAI CEO back in 2019, told BBC Radio Wales.

"I spoke to Rob Page (Wales manager) yesterday and we are all set for that.

"But then news came through about Ukraine requesting postponement of the match to June."

Football has been suspended in Ukraine and it is now expected that FIFA will grant the request for the play-off at Hampden Park to be called off.

Asked about the likelihood of Wales' game being delayed to June should the Scotland-Ukraine semi-final be played then, Mooney replied: "Until we get official clarification of that, you can surmise it.

"We can surmise that, but that's not what we have at the moment. We know Ukraine have asked for a postponement until June, but these things change quite quickly.

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"I have spoken to my Ukrainian counterpart and will speak to him again.

"We'll definitely make the right decision for football and for our friends in Ukraine, and at the same time balance it against the fact we'd like to qualify for our first World Cup since 1958."

Mooney and FAW president Steve Williams are in Glasgow this weekend for a meeting with Scottish Football Association officials that has been arranged for some time.

But Mooney said: "I'm sure these matches in March will be discussed at the dinner table.

"But we've written to FIFA and to UEFA because that's our confederation.

"We wrote to the other associations involved - Scotland, Austria and of course Ukraine - to say we should meet as soon as possible early next week to discuss how this would work as we've got a plethora of Nations League games in June.

"There will be lots of dialogue over the weekend and we'll make a decision next week at the latest I would say.

"Then our fans can look forward to either March or June to play our World Cup play-offs."


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