Joe Allen is confident of winning his fitness battle to line up in Wales' World Cup opener against the United States.
The Swansea midfielder has not played since September 17 because of a hamstring problem and is Wales' biggest fitness concern as they prepare to play at their first World Cup since 1958.
"I'm hoping to be fit for the first game," said the 72-times capped Allen, who played at Euro 2016 and Euro 2020 and was named in the former's team of the tournament.
"There isn't much time, but this is an important week for me. It's improving, thankfully. I'm doing everything I can to get myself fit for the World Cup.
"We'll have to see how this week goes, but I feel confident and comfortable that it won't be too much of a problem."
Wales start their World Cup campaign against the USA on November 21 before playing Iran and England.
Swansea boss Russell Martin said the club's treatment of the injury "wasn't good enough" and there were a "few mistakes along the way".
But Wales manager Robert Page said he was "never going to leave" Allen out of his 26-man World Cup squad and is determined to give him every opportunity to make the opening game.
Allen, 32, told S4C: "At the start, I was a bit unlucky in terms of knowing what exactly the problem was but, thankfully, we did discover how bad the injury was.
"Since then, we made a recovery plan and worked hard. I'm thankful I've had so much help from everyone at Swansea and Wales.
"I've been to Liverpool to see a specialist and had a hyperbaric oxygen chamber in my house. I've thrown everything at it.
"By now, things are going well and hopefully I'll be ready for the start of the tournament."
Wales World Cup 2022 squad
Goalkeepers: Wayne Hennessey (Nottingham Forest), Danny Ward (Leicester), Adam Davies (Sheffield United)
Defenders: Ben Davies (Tottenham), Ben Cabango (Swansea), Tom Lockyer (Luton Town), Joe Rodon (Rennes), Chris Mepham (Bournemouth), Ethan Ampadu (Spezia), Chris Gunter (AFC Wimbledon), Neco Williams (Nottingham Forest), Connor Roberts (Burnley)
Midfielders: Sorba Thomas (Huddersfield), Joe Allen (Swansea), Matt Smith (MK Dons), Dylan Levitt (Dundee United), Harry Wilson (Fulham), Joe Morrell (Portsmouth), Jonny Williams (Swindon), Aaron Ramsey (Nice), Rubin Colwill (Cardiff)
Forwards: Gareth Bale (Los Angeles FC), Kieffer Moore (Bournemouth), Mark Harris (Cardiff), Brennan Johnson (Nottingham Forest), Dan James (Fulham)
Who are their key players?
There has been an injection of youth into the Wales set-up under Rob Page’s leadership, after the 47-year-old stepped up from his role as Under-21 manager from 2017 to 2019. But there are still many experienced heads who have been mainstays in the side for the last 10 years.
Aaron Ramsey continues to be a key midfielder at the heart of most of their forward play. The former Arsenal man has joined Ligue 1's Nice on a free transfer from Juventus and scored on his debut in the 1-1 draw with Toulouse. He has since played in 10 league matches
Ethan Ampadu has already racked up 36 caps at the age of 21 after bursting onto the scene with Chelsea back in 2017. He is still registered to the London side but spent 2021-22 on loan in Serie A at Venezia and moved back to Italy in the summer for another loan spell in the top flight with Luca Gotti's Spezia. His ability to play as a centre-half in a back three, back four and in defensive midfield is a huge asset for Page.
Bale remains the life and soul of the team. A national hero, he joined LAFC after being seemingly ostracised at Real Madrid, and scored twice in his first 12 appearances in MLS, 10 of them from the bench. He will be looking to add to his 40 goals for Wales which make him their all-time leading goalscorer, comfortably eclipsing Ian Rush's 28.
Addressing his lack of minutes and starts in MLS, he said in September: "Every footballer wants to play as much as they can, but we’re being clever and building myself up for the last important part of the season. Hopefully that should put me in great shape for the World Cup. I think I’ll be a lot fitter.”
It is also worth noting the inclusion of Birmingham City teenager Jordan James in the Wales' Nations League squad to face Belgium and Poland. The 18-year-old will got his chance to push for a World Cup berth after veteran midfielder Joe Allen picked up an injury while playing for Swansea City, but he did not play.
Who, where and when do Wales play?
Group Stage fixtures
What is Wales’ World Cup record?
This will only be Wales’ second World Cup and their first in 64 years. They reached the quarter-finals in Sweden where it took a goal from Pele, during his breakout tournament aged only 17, to knock them out.
A more reliable indication of Wales’ chances in Qatar are their showings in the last two European Championships. Last year, a heavy 4-0 defeat by Denmark in Amsterdam knocked them out in the round of 16.
But five years before that, they went all the way to the semi-finals after topping a group containing England and dramatically beating a star-studded Belgium side with goals from Ashley Williams, Hal Robson-Kanu and Sam Vokes. A 2-0 defeat by eventual winners Portugal ended their fairy-tale journey.
A golden generation for the Welsh national side, inaugurated under the stewardship of the late Gary Speed, looks to be reaching its twilight. Will Qatar be the location for its greatest achievement to date?
Argentina | Australia | Belgium | Brazil | Cameroon | Canada | Costa Rica | Croatia | Denmark | Ecuador | England | France | Germany | Ghana | Iran | Japan | Mexico | Morocco | Netherlands | Poland | Portugal | Qatar | Saudi Arabia | Senegal | Serbia | South Korea | Spain | Switzerland | Tunisia | Uruguay | USA | Wales
What are the latest odds?
Wales are currently a best price of 200/1 to win the World Cup.
The leading contenders...
Information correct as of November 13