Wales' Ben Woodburn and Ethan Ampadu can be world class, says Ian Rush
"It is a massive experience for the young players and I am really looking forward to seeing them. They will want to show Chris Coleman that they are ready to produce"
By James McCarthy
Last Updated: 09/11/17 12:04pm
Former Liverpool striker Ian Rush has tipped Wales teenagers Ben Woodburn and Ethan Ampadu to become world-class footballers, as they prepare for a duo of international friendlies.
Reds forward Woodburn, 18, and 17-year-old Chelsea defender Ampadu have been named in Chris Coleman's 24-man squad for matches against European Championship runners-up France and Panama this week.
The meeting with France will be the first meeting between the nations since Rush, who made 73 appearances for Wales between 1980 and 1996, scored in a shock Wales victory in Toulouse in 1982.
"These are two great games and the first one is an opportunity to play one of the best teams in the world," says Rush.
"It is a massive experience for the young players and I am really looking forward to seeing them. They will want to show Chris Coleman that they are ready to produce."
Woodburn shot to stardom in September as his 25-yard strike against Austria kept Wales' hopes of qualifying for the World Cup in Russia 2018.
Coleman's side have since been eliminated from the qualifying campaign, however Woodburn's performance from the bench means he is now expected to make his first start against Panama.
Meanwhile Ampadu, who became the first Millennium-born Chelsea player when he made his senior bow in the League Cup against Nottingham Forest in September, is set to make his international debut.
"These young lads are fearless," said Rush. "I've known Ben since he was 12 or 13 and he's played more for Wales than Liverpool this season."
'Young talent can sway Coleman'
Chris Coleman knows Wales' success story is not over with a talented generation emerging, says Andy King.
Woodburn became Liverpool's youngest goalscorer in November 2016 when he came off the bench to score against Leeds United in the League Cup quarter-final.
"But he's a huge talent and it's the same with Ethan, who I think is a star in the making. These two lads are going to be world class, it's only injury that can stop them.
"I've seen them training with the Wales squad and they were the best players there. It was the same with young David Brooks. He was like lightning and that really puts the older players on their guard."
Wales take on a France side boasting the likes of Antoinne Griezmann and Kylian Mbappe in Paris on Friday.
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