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Wales 1 (Jones 30) Slovakia 2 (Skorvankova 33, Klechova 68)
Wales were beaten 2-1 by Slovakia in the second meeting in their double header of friendly internationals at Bangor.
Wales looked to pick up where they left off on Monday when Helen Ward's second half goal earned Jayne Ludlow victory in her first home game as Wales National Women's Team's manager. It was a win that Wales thoroughly deserved, and in truth, Wales could have won by a few more.
Slovakia started much better tonight (Wednesday) and worked harder to disrupt Wales' passing game in the opening 10 minutes. They looked much more determined to get forward, and it was the visitors who crafted the first chance of the match. On 4 minutes, a lofted free kick into the Wales box found Škorvánková who connected well but her volley narrowly missed the far post.
Wales started to find their rhythm as the half progressed and began to enjoy the majority of the possession, creating a number of chances, and possibly should have been ahead but lacked the cutting edge in the final third. Angharad James created a number of chances, perhaps her best coming in the 12th minute when Natasha Harding headed a long diagonal ball into her path, but James' instinctive volley missed just to the left of the near post.
Minutes later, James' free kick from 25 yards was tipped onto the crossbar by the Slovakian keeper and Nia Jones was quickest to react and fired a bullet header in from close range giving Wales a deserved lead on the half hour mark.
Minutes later Slovakia equalised through Škorvánková who picked the ball on the half way line and showed great pace to beat the Wales defence and fire past a helpless Alice Evans in the Wales goal.
Wales created a number of chances in the closing minutes of the half but couldn't capitalise and it remained 1-1 at half time.
Jayne Ludlow made a number of changes for the second half. Rachel Rowe, Helen Ward and Sophie Williams replaced by Hayey Ladd, Helen Bleazard and Kayleigh Green. As the half progressed the game became increasingly stretched, both sides with opportunities to go in front. The breakthrough came for Slovakia in the 68th minute, Klechová nodding in from a corner.
Wales continued to work hard and looked determined to equalise but couldn't find the back of the next. 17 year old Charlie Estcourt, came agonisingly close in the 90th minute after turning in the box and unleashing a powerful volley that rebounded back off the bar.
Wales were certainly the better side in both of these two friendly fixtures, and were obviously disappointed to be leaving Bangor after defeat tonight. There were plenty of positives to take from both games and Jayne Ludlow was quick to praise the exciting young players who impressed both tonight and in the 1-0 victory on Monday.
Wales: Alice Evans (sub Claire Skinner 75mins), Nia Jones (sub Laura May Walkley 66mins), Kylie Davies, Angharad James (sub Chloe Lloyd 75mins), Sophie Ingle, Rachel Rowe (sub Hayley Ladd 45mins), Natasha Harding, Charlie Estcourt, Helen Ward (sub Helen Bleazard 45mins), Loren Dykes, Steph Williams (sub Kayleigh Green 45mins). Subs not used: Emily Hollingshead, Sarah Wiltshire, Emilie Revitt, Nicola Cousins, Ffion Price.
(Report by www.faw.org.uk)
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