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HT: Aston Villa 0 - 0 Swansea City

It's level at Villa Park this afternoon as Swansea take on Aston Villa in the Premier League.

Credit: PA Images

Football: Welsh sides all in action on busy Saturday

Swansea City will look to recover from back-to-back defeats, as boss Garry Monk chases down a record Premier League tally of 48 points - starting with victory over Aston Villa this afternoon.

Garry Monk shows his frustration in Monday's defeat to Liverpool. Credit: PA

Despite a strong first half performance against Liverpool on Monday night, Swansea succumbed to a 1-0 defeat after Jordan Henderson's fortuitous winner.

Monk will be hoping for a similar display - if not a similar result - at Villa Park, but will no doubt be wary of the resurgence of the Midlands side under new boss Tim Sherwood.

Villa have won their last three games under Sherwood, the last a comprehensive 4-0 win over Sunderland on Saturday that cost Black Cats manager Gus Poyet his job.

Federico Fernandez will be back for today's match with Villa. Credit: PA

Elsewhere, Cardiff City host fellow mid-table side Birmingham City in the Championship. The Bluebirds are unbeaten in their last two games.

Newport County also face a team just one point and place behind them in League Two - Plymouth. The Exiles are themselves just outside the play-off places on goal difference.

Wrexham host Lincoln City at the Racecourse, looking to continue a run which has seen them unbeaten in four games in the Conference.

All the Welsh sides' matches kick off at 3pm.

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Sam Vokes returns to Wales squad to face Israel

Forwards Sam Vokes and Simon Church are back in the Wales squad for next week's crunch Euro 2016 qualifier with Israel, after both recovering from injury.

Chris Coleman has named a strong 23-man squad for the game, including Real Madrid star Gareth Bale, Arsenal midfielder Aaron Ramsey and captain Ashley Williams.

Sam Vokes (no.9) has not played for Wales since victory over Iceland last March. Credit: PA

Vokes was out for nine months after cruciate ligament damage, while Church missed Wales' last game - a hard-fought draw in Belgium in November.

Hull City defender James Chester is the major absentee, after failing to recover in time from a dislocated shoulder.

The game, in Haifi on 28 March, pits together the two sides at the top of Group B.

Wales have made a strong start to their qualifying campaign for France 2016, recording two wins and two draws.

Full Wales squad to face Israel:

  • Wayne Hennessey, Owain Fon Williams, Daniel Ward
  • Ashley Williams, James Collins, Ben Davies, Chris Gunter, Neil Taylor, Samuel Ricketts, Ashley Richards, Adam Henley
  • Joe Allen, Joe Ledley, Aaron Ramsey, David Vaughan, David Edwards, Shaun MacDonald
  • David Cotterill, Hal Robson-Kanu, Tom Lawrence, Gareth Bale, Simon Church, Sam Vokes

Wales to name team to face Israel in Euro 2016 qualifier

Wales are to name their side to take on Israel later, with Chris Coleman's men looking to continue their good form in Group B.

Chester played in starring role in keeping Belgium at bay in November. Credit: Gerrit van Keulen/VI Images/Press Association Images

Wales are currently second in the group, a place and a point behind leaders Israel after two wins and two draws from their opening four games.

Wales will be boosted by the prospect of James Chester's return to fitness - the Hull centre back was expected to be out until April after he dislocated his shoulder in a defeat to West Ham earlier in the year - but he could return to face Chelsea on the 22nd March, six days before the match in Haifa.

Chester has been ever present in the Wales set up, having played every minute of Wales' qualification campaign so far.

Bale's club for has been improving - the Welshman netted twice for Real in their last match against Levante. Credit: Adam Davy/PA Wire

Elsewhere Gareth Bale will be hoping to put his recent disappointing club performances to one side in order to inspire his national side once again.

Bale's contrasting form for Real Madrid and Wales has drawn comment from Israel coach Eli Guttman, who said the winger "saves himself" for the national team.

Wales announce their squad at around 11am today.

Cardiff City 1 - 2 Charlton

Cardiff City suffered more home heartbreak as a late penalty saw them beaten 2-1 by Charlton. Federico Macheda had given the Bluebirds the lead shortly after half time. But Charlton equalised in the 74th minute, with a penalty in the closing stages enough to give them the win. It means Cardiff remain without a win at home since January.

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