Euro 2016: McAuley Own Goal Helps Wales Reach The Quarters As They Beat Northern Ireland 1-0
Gareth McAuley stuck out his leg and tried to clear Real Madrid’ s forward Bale’s pass from the left wing in the 75th minute, but hit the ball into his own net.
Bale shot a beautiful free-kick in the 58th minute, but his shot was saved by Northern Ireland’ s goalkeeper Michael McGovern.
“We knew it was going to be an ugly match. Obviously no disrespect to Ireland, but they make it difficult to play (against) ,” Bale said. “We knew up top we weren’t going to get a lot of the ball. There’s not much space.” “They are really organized,” said Bale. “We had to be patient. They were probably the better team today. We had to hang in there and show a lot of courage.”
“They made it difficult for us but we showed a lot of heart, a lot of courage,” Wales coach Chris Coleman said. “The good thing about these boys is they have that bit of spirit and when they aren’t playing well they can hang on. It wasn’t pretty.”
Wales created the best result since 1958 World Cup, and they will play against Hungary or Belgium in the quarterfinals.