KEIR RADNEDGE in LILLE: Manager Chris Coleman acknowledged “the greatest night of my career” after Wales defeated Belgium 3-1 in Lille to reach the semi-finals of the European Championship for the first time.
Goals from captain Ashley Williams, Hal Robson-Kanu and Sam Vokes turned the game around after Belgium had dominated the start of the match and taken th lead through a magnificent long-range strike from Roma midfielder Radja Nainggolan.
Coleman said: “You dream about nights like this and never think you’ll be good enough or lucky enough to be involved in an experience like that. It’s indescribable, really.
“Four years ago we were as far away from it as you could be. It’s a great example by everybody, staff and players, of what can happen if you believe and work hard and, yes, have a bit of talent.
“Now we find ourselves in an incredible position and we are enjoying every minute of it.”
Wales face Portugal and Bale’s Real Madrid team-mate Cristiano Ronaldo in the semi-finals on Wednesday but will be weakened by the absences through suspensions of defender Ben Davies and magnificent Arsenal midfielder Aaron Ramsey.
Coleman said: “I was gutted for Aaron because he’s been one of the best players in the tournament but we knew we had one or two players on yellows and we had to be ready to do whatever we needed. You can’t hang back but it’s a bit tough at this level, where there is so much presure on the players, tw yellow cards in five games is a bit tough.”
Coleman was happy with the patient manner in which his players took over the game.
He said: “For long perood we were in control of posesion. We didn’t nick the result, we took the game to Belgium, kept posession and when we needed to defend we defended like soldiers. Our performance was fantastic.”