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Wales suffer Nations League relegation after defeat to Poland

WALES were relegated from Group A of the Nations League on Sunday night (Sept 25) as they were beaten 1-0 by Poland.

They needed a win to stay in the top tier but, despite plenty of chances, they were unable to recover after going behind midway through the second half.

Gareth Bale started for Wales at the Cardiff City Stadium, after only being used a sub in the defeat to Belgium.

There was an early error from Wayne Hennessey as he recieved the ball but almost let it roll over the line before kicking the ball away.

With just over half an hour gone, Dan James ran towards goal and he could have passed to Brennan Johnson but chose to shoot instead and saw his shot saved. James then got the ball back but his cross was blocked by Szczesny and was cleared.

Shortly before the break there was another chance for Johnson but after he brought the ball down well, he saw his shot deflect wide off Dan James.

The whistle went for half time with the score at 0-0 and Wales knew they would need to come out well at the start of the second half to give themselves a chance of staying in Group A.

Neither side was able to create any real chances at the start of the second period. There were a couple of half chances from free kicks but they came to nothing.

There was a shout for foul on Dan James as he appeared to be elbowed off the ball by the edge of the box but the referee gave a goal kick to Poland.

On 57 minutes though it was the Poles who took the lead. The ball was played to Robert Lewandowski on the edge of the box and his exquisite flick fell into the path of Swiderski who shot under the legs of Hennessey and into the net.

Kieffer Moore was brought on in the aftermath of the goal to give Wales more options up front.

Two minutes later there was a chance for Wales as Brennan Johnson cut inside from the right but his shot was tipped wide the Polish keeper.

With thirteen minutes to go, Dan James sent a cross into the box and it bounced in front of Szczesny forcing him to push the ball wide for a corner.

Sub Ruben Colwill looked to make an impact but his cross was too close to the Polish keeper.

Moore and Colwill both saw shots blocked as five minutes of added time were shown.

Sorba Thomas then sent a cross into the box but Gareth Bale’s powerful header smacked the bar.

In the sixth minute of time added on Wales had a free kick on the edge of the box. Bale whipped it in but no one could get on the end of it and that was the last chance for Wales.

Despite the loss, Wales will still be looking forward to the World Cup, with their first game coming against the USA on November 21.

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