Euro 2016 qualifiers: ‘Kick Bale and we’ll kick Cyprus back’ - King

Gareth Bale is brought down by Cyprus midfielder Marios Nikolaou
Gareth Bale was subjected to some cynical challenges from Cyprus in Cardiff
Euro 2016 qualifiers: Cyprus v Wales
Venue: GSP Stadium, Nicosia Kick-off: 19:45 BST, Thursday, 3 September
Coverage: Live on BBC Radio 5 live, BBC Radio Wales, BBC Radio Cymru and online.

Wales are ready to stand up to any overly aggressive challenges on Gareth Bale from Cyprus in Thursday's 2016 qualifier, says Andy King.

Leicester midfielder King feels Bale was "targeted" by Cyprus in last year's match in Cardiff when Wales won 2-1.

King was sent off in the second half for a late lunge, but insists Wales will not hold back in Nicosia.

"When playing a team that wants to kick us they need to understand we're going to kick them back," he said.

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"They might be thinking they can get away with a little bit more than what they did over here [in Wales].

"Hopefully that goes for us as well from my point of view. We'll be expecting a tough game. They are a good side - a strong, physical team. We've got to make sure we're ready for that."

Wales will head to Cyprus knowing a victory in Nicosia and another three points at home to Israel on Sunday will secure qualification from Group B.

But Cyprus are still in contention in fourth place, level on nine points with third-place Israel.

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Chris Coleman's side were cruising to victory against Cyprus in October after taking an early two-goal lead.

The visitors clawed a goal back before half-time and King's sending-off just after the break shifted the momentum in Cyprus' favour.

Wales feel Bale was the victim of some cynical challenges throughout and King expects similar tactics this time.

"In the first game that's what got our backs up, the way they were targeting him," said King, who is set to start in Joe Allen's absence through injury.

"They thought they could do anything without us doing anything back. My red card was a mistake and something I've learned from but we need to be prepared because that's probably going to happen again.

"We're ready to give them a bit ourselves as well."

Group B table

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