Gareth Bale counted two dazzling goals in a vintage separate performance to take Wales a step nearer to qualifying for their first Football World Cup since 1958 with a conquest over Austria in their play-off semi-final. Austria’s Christoph Baumgartner hit the crossbar in the fifth minute earlier Bale’s royal free-kick sparked thrilled celebrations for an already roaring home crowd in Cardiff. Wales’ skipper struck another time early in the second half, shooting attractively on the turn from a short angle.
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Marcel Sabitzer’s glanced shot brought Austria back into the game and, even though the guests exerted continued pressure, Football World Cup team Wales raised to the challenge with an enduring defensive display. Wales will now play contrary to Scotland or Ukraine in their play-off final, a one-off tie that was intended to be played next Tuesday, but which has been suspended because Russia attacked Ukraine.
Scotland and Ukraine’s fixture is anticipated to be played in June, with the play-off final established to follow advanced the similar month. The facts of that one-legged final are yet to be established but, for now, Wales can savour this victory in the knowledge that they are one triumph away from ending their 64-year nonappearance from World Cups. For more to know about FIFA World Cup Tickets Click here.
Cardiff City Stadium chucked with sentiment in an extremely charged build-up to the game, with Welsh traditional singer Dafydd Iwan principal a version of his song Yma o Hyd before the crowd took over to below the national anthem with even superior passion than usual. The enthusiastic atmosphere helped Football World Cup team Wales start the game at a blistering pace, pressing Austria from top to bottom of the pitch and unsettling the guests.
FIFA World Cup: Bale’s genius lifts Wales on a night of high emotion
With only 80 seconds gone, Connor Roberts expelled Austria skipper David Alaba and joined with Aaron Ramsey to set up Daniel James for a shot that Heinz Lindner seized. It was hectic at both ends and Austria fruitless a golden chance when Sabitzer played a fine through ball for Christoph Baumgartner, who had time and Wales FIFA World Cup keeper Wayne Hennessey to tired but hit his shot counter to the crossbar thanks to a vital deflection from the layer Neco Williams.
That was a threat for Wales, but they sustained to pour forward, their aggressive line-up which involved Bale, Aaron Ramsey, Daniel James and Harry Wilson all from the start playing with a splendid sense of adventure. The 32-year-old has only played two hours of football for Real Madrid in the former six months and the build-up to this game was conquered by estimation about his fitness, while the captain himself has stated that this might be his final World Cup movement.
But his first goal was the Bale of ancient. A straight free-kick was the first he had recorded for Wales since Euro 2016, 25 yards out and hit with antique precision, dipping just sufficient to clip the bar on its way in to send the Red Wall into euphoria. There were likelihoods to spread Wales’ lead before half-time such as Ramsey’s shot well kept by Lindner and it was Football World Cup Player Bale over who provided the spur after the pause.
From a short angle, Williams swung in a low cross which Davies affected into Bale’s path and FIFA World Cup team Wales’ all-time principal scorer took his tally to 38 with a fierce drive into the upper far bend. As Wales admirers sang Don’t Take Me Home, the soundtrack of their run to the Euro 2016 semi-finals, while they observed a Bale masterclass, it sensed like that golden summer in France return to.
Football World Cup: Wales survive the anxious second half
This has been the greatest fruitful period in Wales’ olden times, with the national team qualifying for back-to-back European Championships and rising to the semi-finals of Euro 2016. Yet despite the record-high world positions and daring contributions from Bale, Ramsey and others, World Cups have continued elusive.
The 1958 tournament in Sweden is still Wales only arrived at Football World Cup and, since then, they have regularly and painfully dropped at the final hurdle. When Sabitzer’s shot glanced off Ben Davies and jogged into the Welsh net, the wisdom of anxiety swept around Cardiff City Stadium as followers began to wonder if this was to be the newest setback in a history littered with alike tales of anguish, from Scotland in 1977 to Romania in 1993.
Austria seized on that restlessness to take control of the second half, albeit without creating numerous clear-cut scoring chances contrary to a resolute FIFA World Cup team Wales defence. There were still starts for Wales, with James’s worsening two particularly good odds, just to heighten the wisdom of nervousness between the home fans. But this team is not weighed down by the nation’s disappointments of the earlier.
The greatest of these players are too young to recall the bad old days and have as an alternative been brought up in an era of steady qualification and winning at home, where they have now not vanished in 17 games. Robert Page’s men still have one more game to cross, but this win will strengthen their confidence that they will be the team to end their nation’s long wait to play at a World Cup.
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