Earnshaw earns recall to Toshack's Wales

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The Independent Football

The Wales manager, John Toshack, has turned again to the striker Robert Earnshaw as his injury crisis worsens ahead of next month's opening two World Cup qualifiers.

Earnshaw had been left out of four previous squads but won a recall last week for the home friendly with Georgia in Swansea.

He got little more than 15 minutes of action as a late substitute, and was then omitted from Toshack's squad named last Friday for the home qualifier with Azerbaijan on Saturday week, 6 September, and the trip to face Russia in Moscow four days later.

Earnshaw's response was to score for Nottingham Forest at the weekend.

However, with a serious groin injury likely to rule Coventry's Freddy Eastwood out of the double-header, 27-year-old Earnshaw has again today been recalled to the Toshack fold.

The manager has also called up Middlesbrough's young centre-back Rhys Williams for the first time as doubts persist that the West Ham defender James Collins will have fully recovered from a knee operation in time to feature.

Collins's club-mate Craig Bellamy may also not have recovered from a hamstring problem.

Williams, 20, has figured prominently in Wales' under-21 campaign to reach next summer's Uefa Championship finals in Sweden, and he has been regularly on the bench for Middlesbrough.

Williams is the 10th under-21 qualified player in Toshack's squad, joining Wayne Hennessey, Chris Gunter, Gareth Bale, Joe Ledley, Aaron Ramsey, David Edwards, David Cotterill, Ched Evans and Sam Vokes.