Euro 2016: Wales overcome Belgium to book historic semi-final place

by Leon Thompson July 13, 2016, 4:02
Euro 2016: Wales overcome Belgium to book historic semi-final place

There's a fairly tasty semi-final contest coming up then... "We are into the semi-finals!"

Paul Ross, 25, now based near Bristol, said: "I'll go for a 1-1 draw and then Wales to hopefully grab something in extra time".

We all continue our journey together...

Belgium took an early lead through Radja Nainggolan on Friday, before Wales came from behind to score three goals. "We can never forget our believes, our identity and our vision", he said.

Their attacking players have found their feet, Eden Hazard in particular impressing with a stunning solo show against the Hungarians while Kevin De Bruyne and Romelu Lukaku have started to show what they are capable of. "It's our time and we look forward to the semi-final".

His early goal against Russian Federation set Wales up for a 3-0 win and top spot in Group B, and his four assists, including two against Belgium, are tied for most at Euro 2016 with Eden Hazard.

"All the players in the team can pass the ball so that's what we tried to do, whether it's Belgium or whoever", Coleman added.

Belgium are ranked second in the world but Bale's pre-match suggestion that Wales are their bogey team now looks even more accurate.

"Four years ago I was as far away from this as you could imagine", said Coleman, 46.

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But, whereas that Bale-inspired 1-0 win in Cardiff was often a backs-to-the-wall exercise, this was a convincing victory which fully deserved and underlined the improvement made under Coleman.

Here's how #WAL swept #BEL aside and set up a #EURO2016 semi-final v #POR...

"We knew what we could give, we had a very clear game plan and we also knew Belgium perfectly from previous matches", Bale said after the game.

Asked after the game if Belgium needed a new coach, Courtois replied: "This was an opportunity we may not get again". We covered every blade of grass. We've taken that into the tournament now.

"I wanted to stand up and be counted, so I am delighted I was able to help my team and grab a couple of assists that meant we won quite comfortably in the end". Especially tonight. It does feel weird that there will be four teams left and we will be one of them and we've got a chance to get to the final.

The celebrations were tinged with disappointment however, after Aaron Ramsey and Ben Davies received bookings which will rule them out of Wednesday's contest in Lyon.

Both players picked up their second cautions of the tournament against Belgium and midfielder Ramsey, in particular, will be a huge loss to Wales.

The Royal Belgian Football Association have stressed they will not rush a decision over the future of manager Marc Wilmots following the nation's Euro 2016 exit at the hands of Wales.

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