16/11/2014 - Belgium v Wales Fans

16 Nov
2014
Belgium
3
Wales Fans
8
Venue: Brussels, Belgium.
Wales Lineup:
Luke James, Dave O'Gorman, Evan Williams, Ellis Annett, Gary Lloyd, Owen Williams, Will Johnson, Daniel Siôn, Siôn Cox, Tim Hartley, Huw Roffe, Andrew Dowling, Eilian Hughes, Deio Jones, Nathan Davies, Wyn Lewis, Andrew Knapp, Luke Nicholas, Carl Prior, Tony Smolka.
Wales Goalscorers:
Daniel Siôn (3), Dave O'Gorman, Gary Lloyd, Owen Williams, Siôn Cox, Will Johnson.
Team photo

Back Row, Left to Right: Neil Dymock, Gary Lloyd, Tony Smolka, Wyn Lewis, Tim Hartley, Deio Jones, Nathan Davies, Daniel Siôn, Huw Roffe, Eilian Hughes, Will Johnson, Andrew Knapp, Andrew Dowling.

Front Row, Left to Right: Owen Williams, Luke James, Ellis Annett, Dave O'Gorman, Siôn Cox, Carl Prior, Luke Nicholas.

16 Nov 2014: Belgium v Wales Fans ‐ Brussels, Belgium

In the shadows of the ground formerly known as the Heysal Stadium, Gary Lloyd, achieved the ultimate of a player's ambition of playing for his country. Admittedly it was 17 years too late, but better late than never as the saying goes. Ok it was only the supporters team, but as Gary would tell you those players who turn out, take it as seriously as Bale & Co, after all they pay the money to watch Wales overseas.

In October 1997, Bobby Gould created history by being the first manager to call up a League of Wales player as it was then known. It was not a shock to those in the know though, as Gary Lloyd was being coveted by a host of league clubs after being one of the stars of the show at Jenner Park, as Barry Town swept all aside, including the likes of Swansea and Cardiff in the FAW Premier Cup.

He had become close to signing for Reading, was offered an 18 month deal at Crewe Alexandra and was a day away from signing for Swansea City, only for Alan Cork to lose his job. It must still have been a shock though swapping a muddy pitch in Barry to train with the likes of Giggsy, Harts and Deano.

The Wales contingent consisted of around 300 back in the Heysel in 97. With the rain lashing down and Wales 3-0 down, it looked like Gary would win his first cap, but Mark Pembridge and Ryan Giggs scored to give Wales hope and Bobby Gould sent on Gareth Taylor and John Oster to try and salvage a draw.

Fast forward 17 years to the Wales Supporters Team. They are either brilliant or dire, it depends on the venue and the night out had by all the previous night. Wales have beaten the likes of England, Germany, Scotland, Austria and Czech Republic, drawn with Serbia, Holland and Italy but lost heavily to the likes of Slovakia, Bilbao IKEA, Iceland and the USA, whose fullbacks were both female and the best players.

Malcolm Allen and Dave Phillips have played, while we have faced players from Macedonia, Iceland and Austria with over 200 full caps between them. You never know what you are up against, some teams Rhys Lewis would look like Messi against. Back then to Brussels....

Wales had played Belgium Supporters twice in the previous campaign, winning 11-2 in Cardiff but losing 2-0 in Brussels. Wales had done everything but score in the 2-0, but this time things would be different.

With a squad of 17 players and 2 on their way from Eurostar, Wales had a strong team and a great chance of a win. No one even looked that tired from the night before so that was a bonus, although the keeper, Luke James who had conceded 16 goals on his debut in Slovakia in 2007 was looking shaky in the warm up. With Belgium TV present to film highlights, the game commenced....

Wales started well and Tony Smolka and Andrew Dowling upfront were creating havoc in the Belgium defence and it was not long before Wales were starting to create chances....... and miss them.

With 25 minutes gone and Wales starting to panic as Belgium looked dangerous on the break, the breakthrough finally came as Wales captain Dave O'Gorman opened the scoring much to the relief of the 11 Wales fans who had turned up to support. Belgium 0 Wales 1.

With ten minutes to go before the interval, came the moment of the match. Gary had slowly been becoming more dominant in the game as his deft touches and pinpoint passing began to grind down Belgium. Wales had a corner and Lloyd ventured forward, powering a header far beyond the despairing dive of the Belgium keeper who up until that point had kept the home side in the game. Gary Lloyd had scored on his debut for Wales. He now had a full Welsh cap and goal to add to his Wales B and Semi pro collection. However just before the interval Belgium pulled a goal back after a goal mouth scramble.

The second half saw Wales run Belgium rampant, scoring a further 6 times, although Belgium did score 3 times themselves as Wales gave caution to the wind and attacked at every opportunity. The best of the bunch was a superb 40 yard shot from Owen Williams, while Dan Siôn scored a super-fast second half debut hatrick along with a debut goal from Siôn Cox. Will Johnson wcored the other goal. Another debut was that of Carl Prior who played well up front while Barry Town fans Luke Nicholas achieved an ambition of playing alongside one of his heroes growing up, Gary Lloyd.

A successful afternoon then and it was soon to get even better as Wales defended resoundingly to grind out a 0-0 draw against the 4th best team in the World. For the record the scorers for Wales in Belgium were Dave O'Gorman, Gary Lloyd, Will Johnson (again), Owen Williams, Daniel Siôn (3) & Siôn Cox.

Manager Neil Dymock said after the game "We had a strong squad out there in Brussels, the boys did Wales proud, but full credit to Belgium they were no push overs and had their chances. It was good to make up for our defeat out here last year and we will be looking for another win in Cardiff, which hopefully will be the first part of a double that day!"

Wales: Luke James, Luke Nicholas, Huw Roffe, Wyn Lewis, Gary Lloyd, Owen Williams, Will Johnson, Tim Hartley, Dave O'Gorman, Siôn Cox, Eilian Hughes, Elis Annett, Daniel Siôn, Tony Smolka, Andrew Dowling, Nathan Davies, Carl Prior, Deio Jones.

Other matches against Belgium

07 Sep 2012
Cardiff
Wales Fans
11
Belgium
2
Match Details
15 Oct 2013
Brussels
Belgium
2
Wales Fans
0
12 Jun 2015
Cardiff
Wales Fans
5
Belgium
2
Match Details