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FIFA World Cup 2022:USA 1-1 Wales

At the start of the match, the United States showed itself to be far superior to its rival, drowning out the ball with great forward pressure and creating several chances

by Kolkata Today

At the start of the match, the United States showed itself to be far superior to its rival, drowning out the ball with great forward pressure and creating several chances. The best was a double try that first took Hennessey off a friendly-fire header from centre-back Ben Davies and then Josh Sargent, at goal mouth, found the post and went into the side of the net.After fifteen minutes of play, Wales began to shake off the pressure and had some close, but only long shots without danger.Half an hour was reached with the defenses prevailing over the attacks.

Wales ended their 64-year World Cup exile with a draw against USA after Gareth Bale struck from the spot to cap a second-half Red Dragons revival. Gregg Berhalter’s team were irresistible in the opening 45 minutes, controlling the contest and twice coming close to going in front prior to Timothy Weah’s clever 36th-minute strike.
Welsh goalkeeper Wayne Hennessey reacted instinctively to prevent an own goal when defender Joe Rodon inadvertently turned the ball on target. There was another let off for Wales when Josh Sargent cracked the base of the post after connecting with Antonee Robinson’s firm delivery.

But USA got the goal to reflect their superiority when Weah skipped on to Christian Pulisic’s precise through ball to finish beyond Hennessey with the outside of his right boot.
Kieffer Moore was introduced at half-time and the presence of the imposing striker immediately unsettled USA. Matt Turner tipped over from Ben Davies’s header and at the subsequent corner Moore couldn’t believe he aimed a near-post header too high. The momentum had swung, nevertheless, and US captain Tim Ream rashly tried to win the ball from Bale, who had his back to goal as he controlled Aaron Ramsey’s low delivery.
Could Bale convert from the spot? You bet he could. The man for the big occasion crashed his rising strike inside the right post to leave Group B nicely poised after Monday’s opening round of fixtures.

Gareth Bale’s goal was the first for Wales at the FIFA World Cup since Terry Medwin scored their second goal in a 2-1 win against Hungary on 17 June 1958. Bale is the fourth Welshman to score in a World Cup match following John Charles, Ivor Allchurch and Medwin.

Gareth Bale said , “We were fully focused on this game. It was not a good first half, to be honest, they played really well and we were poor. It was a great talk from the coach at half-time and the boys came out fighting and battling and looked like we’d win the game.
“It’s a great point from where we were and we showed character, like we did in 2021 at the EURO. We had to come back stronger [after half-time] and show our character. I feel I have to step up [for penalties] and I am happy to do so. It feels incredible [to score in World Cup] but I’d rather have three points.”

Player of the Match:Gareth Bale

On Friday, November 25, the two teams will return to play the second day, Wales will play against Iran and the United States will play against England.

By Fernando Perez (Football Analyst, Spain)

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