Coming into this game, it was pretty obvious to see that Hungary were the ones in a position of power. In order to take one step closer towards the European Championships, the Welsh would’ve had to put in one of their best performances since reaching the semi finals of Euro 2016. Unfortunately, that didn’t wind up being the case, as the home side moved three points clear at the top of the table.
Getting the job done
Wales’ defeat against Croatia clearly played on the mind of Ryan Giggs, who made a series of attacking changes to the starting XI for this game. They looked set to pose a much tougher challenge to Hungary, but despite a few bright sparks here and there, they just didn’t look all too confident – especially when they lost the ball.
After a goalless first 45 minutes the main chance for the Welsh fell to the one person they would hope: Gareth Bale. The Real Madrid star had the world at his feet after some nice build-up play from his teammates, but he just couldn’t get his angles right as he failed to take advantage of the opportunity.
Moving on up
The home fans were getting progressively louder and louder, in an attempt to try and push their side towards all three points. With 10 minutes remaining, Adam Szalai was able to lay the ball off nicely to Mate Patkai who struck with a confident finish to give them the victory. A lot of people were doubting them heading into the qualifiers, but that certainly isn’t going to be the case now.
Hungary’s next qualifier comes against Slovakia in early September, and they know that they’re just a few wins away from sealing a place in the final tournament next summer. The Welsh have more work to do when they face Azerbaijan, but hopefully for them, they’ll be able to build up a series a strong results against lower opposition. That is far from a guarantee, though, and Ryan Giggs will need to ensure that he gets his players’ heads back in the game. If he can’t, they’re in big trouble.
Hungary: Gulacsi (7), Lovrencsics (6.5), Barath (6), Orban (6.5), Korhut (6), Patkai (7), Nagy (6.5), Szoboszlai (6.5), Dzsudszsak (7), Szalai (6.5), Holender (6), Bese (N/A), Kleinheisler (N/A), Varga (6.5)
Wales: Hennessey (6.5), Gunter (6), Williams (6.5), Lawrence (6), Davies (6.5), Ampadu (6), Allen (6.5), Bale (6), Brooks (7), Lawrence (6.5), James (6), Smith (6), Wilson (N/A), Vokes (N/A)
Referee: Matej Jug
Yellow Cards: Korhut, Patkai, Nagy, Gunter, Lawrence, Davies
Red Cards: N/A
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