England 2-1 Wales
The first half was a tight and tense affair with England in the ascendancy for the majority of it. Six minutes into the game Adam Lallana was released down the right-wing he beat his marker before squaring the ball to the onrushing Raheem Sterling. The winger slid towards the ball and saw his effort go high above the crossbar. A fantastic chance that really should have been capitalized on. Wales made the odd foray into the English half but didn’t create any clear-cut chances. England’s next chance came from a 26th minute Wayne Rooney free kick Center-back Gary Cahill lost his maker but his header was weak and didn’t trouble Hennessey. England had a penalty shout soon after when the ball struck Ben Davies arm but it was waved away by referee Felix Brych.With 42 minutes played England gave away a free kick 35 yards out from goal. Bale stepped up to the plate, lifting it over the wall with pace. The ball dipped in front of Joe Hart in the England goal but it was close enough to goalkeeper that you’d expect him to save it. Hart got both hands to the ball but wasn’t strong enough and directed it into the bottom right corner. The first real Welsh chance saw England head into the break trailing.
Roy Hodgson made two attacking substitutions at half time introducing strikers Daniel Sturridge and Jamie Vardy for Raheem Sterling and Harry Kane. Ten minutes after his introduction Vardy was celebrating. A cross from Danny Rose lead to midair scramble in the Welsh box. Skipper Ashley William was unfortunate as his glace at the ball played it back to Vardy who fired it past Hennessey. England were back in the game and began to apply pressure on a now suspect looking Welsh defence. England were throwing everything bar the kitchen sink into their attacks but the Welsh back four stood firm and cleared ball after ball.
Throwing caution to the win Hodgson brought on 18-year-old Marcus Rashford adding more bite to the English attack. England owned the ball but yet again the Welsh team held firm. Nine or ten men behind the ball at all times ensured they remained level. Wales put on a defensive masterclass in the second half up until the 91st minute. Daniel Sturridge played a one two with Vardy.The Leicester man went down leaving the ball to Dele Alli who lay it into the path of Sturridge who had continued his run. He collected the ball before slotting the ball past Hennesey breaking Welsh hearts. Bale had a half chance in the final minute but his header went wide of the upright. Wales could only absorb so much pressure and England deserved to win today. Roy Hodgson went for the win and his substitutes rewarded him.
England move to the top of Group B with 4 points with Wales in joint second on three with Slovakia.
Man of the Match – Kyle Walker (England)
- Daniel Sturridge replaces Raheem Sterling 46 mins
- Jamie Vardy replaces Harry Kane 46 mins
- Marcus Rashford replaces Adam Lallana 73 mins
David Edwards replaces Joe Ledley 67 mins
- Jonathan Williams replaces Hal Robson-Kanu 72 mins
England – None
Wales – Ben Davies.