Cymru vs England - A Story in Ten Fixtures
17 July 2020

Cymru vs England - A Story in Ten Fixtures

The latest instalment of one of the oldest international fixtures in the world will take place at Wembley Stadium on 8 October as Cymru take on England in an international friendly.

The two nations have met over 100 times since the inaugural fixture at the Kennington Oval back in January 1879 that ended in a 2-1 victory for England.

Since then, Cymru have registered 14 wins to England's 67, with 21 draws completing the 102 game record. The last meeting between the two teams was during the group stage of the UEFA EURO 2016 finals, which also saw England claim a 2-1 win.  

With a century of fixtures taking place between those two occasions, here's a look back at ten defining games that tell a story through the ages of a rivalry that remains one of the most-anticipated and fierce in the international game.


England 0-1 Cymru

  • 26 February 1881
  • International Friendly
  • Blackburn

The third meeting between the two nations resulted in Cymru earning their first win against their rivals.

John Vaughan scored the only goal of the game to establish his name in Welsh football folklore with just over 4,000 supporters in attendance for this latest international meeting. 


Cymru 5-3 England

  • 13 March 1882
  • International Friendly
  • Wrexham

With a first victory under their belt, Cymru repeated the feat at Wrexham a year later as John Morgan, John Vaughan, an own goal from Alfred Jones and a brace from William Pierce Owen earned the home team a memorable win.

With an estimated 5,000 people in attendance, nobody would witness Cymru claim another victory over England for the next 38 years.


England 1-2 Cymru

  • 15 March 1920
  • British Home Championship
  • London.

A penalty from Stanley Davies and a goal from Richard Richards earned Cymru their first win over England since 1882.

The great Billy Meredith and Fred Keenor were included in the Cymru side at Highbury, while Charles Buchan, who would later become a revered commentator and journalist, scored the only goal for England.

Keenor and Buchan would later meet as opposing captains in the 1927 FA Cup final, with Cardiff City beating Arsenal 1-0 at Wembley.


England 3-0 Cymru

  • 13 November 1946
  • British Home Championship
  • Manchester

Almost 60,000 fans were in attendance at Maine Road for the first post-war meeting between the two teams and it was England that ran out comfortable winners.

Goals from Tommy Lawton and a brace from Wilf Mannion earned Walter Winterbottom's talented team the victory.

Billy Wright and Tom Finney were included in the England side, while Alf Sherwood and Ron Burgess were two of the more familiar names in the Cymru line-up that day. 


Cymru 1-4 England

  • 15 October 1949
  • FIFA World Cup qualifier
  • Cardiff

This was the first meeting between the two countries in World Cup qualifying, and a hat-trick from Jackie Milburn ensured that Walter Winterbottom's team would move a step closer to the finals in Brazil.

For the first time, the British Home Championship doubled-up as the World Cup qualifying group.

Stan Mortensen had opened the scoring for England, while Mal Griffiths scored the only goal for Cymru with over 60,000 fans in attendance at Ninian Park.


Cymru 2-1 England

  • 22 October 1955
  • British Home Championship
  • Cardiff

Another huge crowd of around 60,000 fans packed into Ninian Park to witness a rare victory for Cymru over England as goals from Derek Tapscott and Cliff Jones earned the first post-war win for the side against their rivals.

John Charles scored an own goal in the second half to give England hope, but the side that also included Trevor Ford, Ivor Allchurch and goalkeeper Jack Kelsey held on for a memorable win.


Cymru 1-2 England

  • 24 March 1976
  • Centenary Match
  • Wrexham

Don Revie brought an experimental England side to Wrexham to mark the centenary celebrations of the Football Association of Wales, and goals from Ray Kennedy and Peter Taylor earned the visitors a 2-1 victory.

Alan Curtis scored a late consolation for Mike Smith's side to give the 20,927 supporters something to cheer on what was a more significant occasion for what it represented than the actual game.


Cymru 4-1 England

  • 17 May 1980
  • British Home Championship
  • Wrexham

One of the most memorable fixtures between the two nations saw Mike England's team claim a generation-defining victory over their opponents.

Mickey Thomas, Ian Walsh, Leighton James and an own goal from Phil Thompson made for an incredible result, with Paul Mariner scoring the only goal for Ron Greenwood's side.

Terry Yorath captained a Cymru side that also included Joey Jones, Brian Flynn and Peter Nicholas.


Cymru 1-0 England

  • 2 May 1984
  • British Home Championship
  • Wrexham

Although the margin of victory wasn't quite as impressive, this was another famous win for Mike England and his Cymru team, with a young Mark Hughes scoring the only goal of the game on his international debut.

It would prove to be the final match between the two nations in the British Home Championship as the competition was brought to an end that year.


Cymru 0-2 England

  • 26 March 2011
  • UEFA EURO qualifying
  • Cardiff

Fabio Capello brought his England side to Cardiff as the late Gary Speed took charge of his first home match as Cymru manager with the support of almost 70,000 fans in the capital.

However, Frank Lampard converted an early penalty before Darren Bent doubled the advantage for the visitors inside the opening 15 minutes.

Cymru regrouped after the setback, but couldn't find a way back into the match.



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