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Wales frustrate Belgium in Bellamy swansong

Belgium 1-1 Wales
Aaron Ramsey scored a late leveller as the Group A winners were held at home on Craig Bellamy's final international appearance.

Aaron Ramsey takes the acclaim after his equaliser
Aaron Ramsey takes the acclaim after his equaliser ©Getty Images

Wales captain Aaron Ramsey hit an 88th-minute equaliser to earn his side a draw at FIFA World Cup qualifying Group A winners Belgium, on Craig Bellamy's final international appearance.

The hosts were hoping to finish their campaign on a high, but Ramsey's strike spoiled the party in the Belgian capital. Kevin De Bruyne's 64th-minute goal had appeared to hand the Red Devils their ninth success of the campaign.

Although top spot in the standings was already secured, coach Marc Wilmots named a strong team and it was only the fine form of Wales No1 Wayne Hennessey that prevented Belgium strolling to victory. The visiting keeper made a string of saves to frustrate Romelu Lukaku and Kevin Mirallas – and was helped out by his crossbar when Toby Alderweireld had him beaten with a deflected volley. 

Hennessey could do nothing about De Bruyne's strike, though. The attacker capitalised on a defensive error to bear down on goal and finish in style. Thibaut Courtois was eventually called into action, pawing away a Sam Vokes shot as a determined Wales clawed their way back into the match.

Welsh coach Chris Coleman introduced fresh legs late on, as 16-year-old Harry Wilson became the principality's youngest-ever player, but it was an old hand that made the difference. Bellamy, on his swansong, held the ball up smartly in the Belgium box before slipping in the overlapping Ramsey, who poked past Courtois at his near post.