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Stubborn Israel keep Wales waiting

Published: Sunday 6 September 2015, 19.52CET
Wales 0-0 Israel
A draw means Chris Coleman's side are guaranteed at least a play-off place – but the chance to qualify went begging in Group B.
by Simon Hart
from Cardiff City Stadium

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Match statistics

WalesIsrael

Goals scored0
 
0
Possession (%)58
 
42
Total attempts17
 
2
on target7
 
1
off target7
 
1
blocked3
 
0
against woodwork0
 
0
Corners11
 
1
Offsides2
 
2
Yellow cards2
 
5
Red Cards0
 
0
Fouls committed9
 
12
Fouls suffered11
 
9

Standings

SSI Err
Published: Sunday 6 September 2015, 19.52CET

Stubborn Israel keep Wales waiting

Wales 0-0 Israel
A draw means Chris Coleman's side are guaranteed at least a play-off place – but the chance to qualify went begging in Group B.

  • Wales frustrated in front of expectant Cardiff crowd
  • Point will keep Wales above Belgium going into October's final round of qualifiers
  • Wales are also now guaranteed a play-off place
  • Five-man Israel defence effectively neutralises Gareth Bale
  • Next games: Bosnia and Herzegovina v Wales, Israel v Cyprus (10 October)

Wales have waited over half a century to qualify for a major tournament and the wait will go on for a while longer after Chris Coleman's men were frustrated by Israel in a goalless draw in Cardiff.

After winning in Cyprus on Thursday, Group B leaders Wales came into the game hoping to make history by sealing their ticket to UEFA EURO 2016, yet instead had to settle for a point which leaves the prize still dangling with matches against Bosnia and Herzegovina and Andorra to come next month.

'Together Stronger' is the Wales team motto for this campaign and this sense of unity came across more forcefully than ever in a stirring rendition of the Welsh anthem, Land Of Our Fathers, before kick-off. With the reward of qualification so tantalisingly close, Wales began like a side possessed, giving their opponents no time to dwell on the ball and pressing relentlessly.

Aaron Ramsey had a couple of early shots blocked and by the eighth minute, Wales should have had a goal. Ashley Richards won the ball inside Israeli territory on the right and Hal Robson-Kanu sent Andy King running clear into the box. His shot lacked conviction, however, and goalkeeper Ofir Marciano was equal to it, with Ramsey heading over on the rebound.

©Getty Images

Chris Coleman gives his side instructions

By the 20-minute mark, Wales had already forced five corners and it was a measure of their high-tempo start that even before then referee Ivan Bebek had had words with Marciano for delaying a goal kick. Israel, who began the day two points behind second-placed Belgium, were set up to frustrate Wales with a five-man defence and three sitting midfielders and after surviving the early storm, they succeeded in their task. 

Israel coach Eli Gutman made two changes at half-time, Tal Ben Haim II coming on for Beram Kayal and Tomer Hemed replacing No9 Munas Dabbur, yet still it was Israel's defence working harder. It was telling, though, that Wales' best chances came from set pieces, Gareth Bale lifting a free-kick over from the edge of the box and King directing a header straight at Marciano from a corner.

At the other end it was not until the 82nd minute that Hemed finally forced a save from Wayne Hennessey with a late header. Even so, Wales very nearly had the last laugh, Simon Church having a goal ruled out for offside in added time.

Last updated: 08/09/15 0.01CET

http://www.uefa.com/uefaeuro/season=2016/matches/round=2000446/match=2013999/postmatch/report/index.html#wales+wait+continues

Lineups

Wales

Wales

Israel

Israel

1
HennesseyWayne Hennessey (GK)
18
MarcianoOfir Marciano (GK)
2
GunterChris Gunter
3
Ben HaimTal Ben Haim (C)
3
N. TaylorNeil Taylor
4
BittonNir Bitton
Yellow Card61
4
RichardsJazz Richards
Yellow Card59
6
NatchoBibras Natcho
Yellow Card56
6
A. WilliamsAshley Williams (C)
7
ZahaviEran Zahavi
Substitution90+3
7
EdwardsDavid Edwards
8
KayalBeram Kayal
Substitution46
8
KingAndy King
Substitution86
9
DabburMunas Dabbur
Yellow Card18
Substitution46
9
Robson-KanuHal Robson-Kanu
Yellow Card79
Substitution79
16
DasaEli Dasa
Yellow Card45+1
10
RamseyAaron Ramsey
19
DganiOrel Dgani
Yellow Card56
11
BaleGareth Bale
20
Ben HarushOmri Ben Harush
18
DaviesBen Davies
21
TibiEytan Tibi

Substitutes

21
WardDanny Ward (GK)
1
LeviBarak Levi (GK)
12
O. Fôn WilliamsOwain Fôn Williams (GK)
23
HaimovGuy Haimov (GK)
5
ChesterJames Chester
2
MeshumarEyal Meshumar
13
MacDonaldShaun MacDonald
5
MeliksonMaor Melikson
14
ChurchSimon Church
Substitution79
10
HemedTomer Hemed
Substitution46
15
VokesSam Vokes
Substitution86
11
BuzagloMaor Buzaglo
16
VaughanDavid Vaughan
12
Ben ChaimTal Ben Chaim
Substitution46
17
CotterillDavid Cotterill
13
DavidzadaOfir Davidzada
19
CollinsJames Collins
14
VermouthGil Vermouth
20
LawrenceTom Lawrence
15
Tzedek                        Shir Tzedek
22
WilliamsJordan Williams
17
SaharBen Sahar
Substitution90+3
23
HenleyAdam Henley
22
KehatRoi Kehat

Coach

Chris Coleman (WAL) Eli Gutman (ISR)

Referee

Ivan Bebek (CRO)

Assistant referees

Tomislav Petrović (CRO), Miro Grgić (CRO)

Fourth official

Dalibor Conjar (CRO)

Additional assistant referees

Domagoj Vučkov (CRO), Goran Gabrilo (CRO)

Legend:

  • GoalsGoals
  • Own goalOwn goal
  • PenaltiesPenalties
  • Missed PenaltiesMissed Penalties
  • reds_cardRed Cards
  • yellow_cardsYellow cards
  • yellow_red_cardsYellow/red card
  • SubstitutionSubstitution