Wout Weghorst struck deep in added time to grab Netherlands a dramatic 2-1 Nations League win over Wales in Cardiff and finish the hosts’ spectacular house run.
Rhys Norrington-Davies seemed to have prolonged Wales’ unbeaten house file when he struck his first Wales aim within the second minute of stoppage time to cancel out Teun Koopmeiners’ opener.
However Netherlands went straight up the pitch and Weghorst’s very good header inflicted a primary house defeat on Wales since November 2018, ending a run of 19 video games unbeaten on Welsh soil.
4 days earlier Wales had certified for his or her first World Cup for 64 years and this was positively a case of after the Lord Mayor’s present with the depth of the event usually resembling a pleasant greater than a aggressive fixture.
Each groups fielded shadow sides – in Netherlands’ case they made 11 adjustments from the facet that had thumped Belgium 4-1 of their Nations League opener.
The Wales squad had celebrated reaching the finals in Qatar later this 12 months at Gareth Bale’s Elevens bar in Cardiff metropolis centre into the early hours of Monday morning.
Bale received his 104th cap after being despatched on for the ultimate 13 minutes, however Wales slid to a second Nations League defeat following final week’s setback in Poland.
Robert Web page was taking cost of Wales for the twenty fourth time – the identical quantity as Ryan Giggs, who stays on particular go away forward of his August courtroom case.
Web page made 4 adjustments for Wales’ third of 5 video games within the house of 14 days, with Ben Davies, Connor Roberts, Daniel James and Joe Rodon surviving from Sunday’s play-off ultimate win over Ukraine. Davies wore the armband in Bale’s absence from the beginning XI.
Netherlands’ new-look facet was and not using a host of family names, together with Liverpool defender Virgil Van Dijk who had been launched from the camp to begin his summer time vacation early.
Louis van Gaal had presided over an unbeaten 10-game run – seven wins and three attracts – since returning for a 3rd spell in cost in September and confidence was clearly coursing via Dutch veins.
But it surely was an uncomfortable begin for PSV Eindhoven defender Jordan Teze on his debut.
Teze picked up a third-minute warning for a cynical block on James and shortly despatched the ball out of play whereas beneath no strain.
Netherlands did not capitalise when Rodon was caught in possession and Koopmeiners’ shot was blocked.
Wales have been content material to defend in numbers and spring ahead utilizing the tempo of James and Brennan Johnson.
Regardless of Netherlands’ important top benefit, Wales additionally posed an aerial menace with Harry Wilson and Norrington-Davies each eluding markers to move huge.
James’ pace nearly embarrassed Mark Flekken on two events because the goalkeeper dwelt on the ball too lengthy.
Flekken punched away a Wilson free-kick and likewise safely gathered as James fired straight at him.
They have been the one on-target efforts of a primary half through which Netherlands loved 62 per cent possession however couldn’t ship the telling move to check Danny Ward within the Wales aim.
Davies, as he had carried out towards Ukraine, denied Koopmeiners with an excellent last-ditch deal with and Chris Mepham additionally defended neatly on the stroke of half-time to disclaim Cody Gakpo.
Netherlands began the second half with extra intent and Koopmeiners, having planted a free-kick simply huge, drilled a low shot previous substitute goalkeeper Adam Davies.
It was Netherlands’ first on-target try and Wales have been saved at arm’s size till Norrington-Davies climbed fantastically on the far put up to ship a thunderous header previous Flekken.
However Welsh pleasure was immediately curtailed when Burnley striker Weghorst scored with a robust header to stretch Netherlands’ 100 per cent file on this fixture to 9 video games.