Gareth Bale leads his team in their first World Cup since 1958. The Americans should have most of the possession – and they will need to use it
Wales’ sole other finals appearance came in 1958, when Manchester United caretaker manager Jimmy Murphy led them to the quarter-finals of a 16-nation tournament with only four non-European teams. Wales advanced from a group also containing hosts Sweden, Hungary and Mexico, but without the injured Juventus star John Charles they lost to Brazil. Pele scored the only goal. Singled out for rough treatment by Hungary in the previous game, Charles’ absence is one of the most famous “what ifs” in Welsh football.