The Welsh national football team shattered the Ukrainian national team’s hopes and dreams of playing at the World Cup finals in Qatar on Sunday, June 5.
Ordinary Ukrainians, members of the armed forces and football fans alike, were all willing on the Ukraine team, but it was just not to be.
A free kick by Real Madrid superstar Gareth Bale in the 33rd minute was deflected into the Ukrainian goal off winger Andriy Yarmolenko and beat goalkeeper Heorhiy Bushchan.
Ukraine refused to be crushed by that misfortune, and were unlucky not to be awarded a penalty before half-time when Yarmolenko seemed to be fouled by Joe Allen inside the penalty box.
Hennessey prevented striker Roman Yaremchuk from scoring before Viktor Tsyhankov hit the ball past the post from a good position.
Ukraine continued to attack in the second half with the Wales team pinned back inside their own half.
Tsyhankov had a goal-bound shot saved by Hennessey and Yaremchuk put the rebound wide of the goal.
With just minutes to go Hennessey produced an excellent save to prevent substitute Artem Dovbyk’s header finding the net.
Ukraine deserved much more from another exceptionally composed performance under the strain of carrying the hopes of a nation devastated by Russia’s ongoing invasion.
The team was unable to repeat the fine soccer it played in the 3-1 victory against Scotland just a few days earlier. That goal in the 33rd minute was the difference between the two sides.
Wales will face England, USA, and Iran in Group B of the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar, which is scheduled to run from November 21 to December 18.
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