England 2-1 Wales
MATCH REPORT BY WAQAR HUSSAINLIVE REPORTING BY ÂDIL KHANAn injury time winner from Daniel Sturridge sunk Wales in a thrilling Group B tie in Lens. Gareth Bale had given his side the lead with a first half free kick, but the half-time introductions of Jamie Vardy and Sturridge inspired The Three Lions to a dramatic win.
The two neighbouring countries had last met in a Qualifying tie for Euro 2012, from which England prevailed with a 1-0 victory courtesy of a goal from Ashley Young. Wales had not scored against The Three Lions for 43 years, but boasted the qualities of talisman Gareth Bale going into this particular contest.
The Welsh were buoyed by their encouraging 2-1 win against Slovakia on Saturday, and headed into the game knowing a win would ensure they advanced to the Round of 16, joining hosts France.
England were still reeling from the disheartening way their game ended against Russia, the injury time equaliser from Berezutski ignited nationwide outrage questioning the decisions of Roy Hodgson and calls for Harry Kane to be dropped were echoed amongst fans everywhere.
A rousing rendition of Hen Wlad Fy Nhadau and God Save Our Queen served as the fitting foundations of a tantalising game. Lights, camera, action.
England were the quickest out of the blocks, and Adam Lallana carved out a scoring opportunity for Raheem Sterling with a low cross from the right, the Manchester City man horribly slicing his effort over the bar from point blank range.
The dominance of Hodgson's men continued for the majority of the first half hour, as Rooney curled in a delicious free kick for Cahill to nod in, saved by Hennessey. Moments later, England had a penalty shout turned away by referee Felix Byrch as Harry Kane's header struck Ben Davies on the hand, though the Welshman was oblivious to the direction of the ball.
England continued to be camped in the Welsh half, but lacked the cutting edge to put the ball in the net. A rare break for Wales and a free kick later, the Dragon breathed to life. A distance of 35m separated Gareth Bale and the goal as he stood over the set-piece, but the £85m man was unnerved. A dipping free kick gazumped the wall and crept in, despite Joe Hart's best efforts to keep it out. Pandemonium ensued amongst the red half of the stadium, and England were stuck, confused and desperately needed a big team talk from the manager at half time.
Eric Dier took on the midfield responsibilities as Rooney, Lallana and Alli flooded forward in search for the all important winner. Adam Lallana had a shot blocked and his Liverpool teammate Sturridge failed to connect with a volley inside the box. Marcus Rashford was thrown on by Hodgson, becoming the youngest player to ever appear at the European Championships for England.
The result personified the never-say-die attitude of England, and the action definitely carried a feel of Premier League football to it, with a blistering tempo and drama written all over it. Both sides have the chance to advance by avoiding defeat on Monday, England face a Slovakia side still in contention to progress themselves, while Wales come up against a Russia side who have flattered to deceive thus far.
More Euro 2016 coverage