World Cup Qualifier Play-Off; Wales 1-0 Ukraine - They may have been too strong for Scotland, but they couldn’t stop Wales reaching the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
Yes, a gritty and determined performance from Rob Page’s Wales team saw them beat Ukraine 1-0 at the Cardiff City Stadium and take their place at the Qatar World Cup later this year.
It wasn’t a pretty match, and in all honesty it was never going to be. It was one of those matches, where only the result mattered.
Ukraine can feel hard done to. Oleksandr Zinchenko’s disallowed free kick goal, the penalty that never was, even the unlucky own goal by Andriy Yarmolenko that decided the match. Nothing really went right for Oleksandr Petrakov’s team.
The stats will say that Ukraine dominated the match. They had 68% possession, and 22 shots at goal, with 9 on target. As for Wales, they had 32% possession, with 10 shots, 3 of which were on target.
But once Rob Page’s team got their noses in front, it was always going to be a backs-to-the-wall rearguard action. So I think the stats are a touch misleading.
The Welsh did ride their luck, no doubt about that. They relied on last-ditch defending, and a heroic display from Wayne Hennessey between the posts.
They also did well to survive a penalty appeal against Joe Allen, who was already on a yellow card when he clearly caught Yarmolenko with his follow through, in the Welsh box in the 39th minute.
On such fine margins, games are decided. And on this occasion, it was the Welsh who got the luck. And after 64 years, Wales are finally back at a World Cup Finals.
Wales 1-0 Ukraine Match Highlights - 5th June, 2022
Wales World Cup Betting
In the latest 2022 World Cup Betting, Wales are 150/1 to win the competition. They are in Group B, alongside England, USA and Iran. The Welsh are 9/2 second favourites to top the group, and Evens to qualify for the
Odds courtesy of Betfair. More details available in our Betfair Review.