Wales U20s remain undefeated in the Toulon Tournament after a dramatic 2-2 draw against Ivory Coast in Aubagne.
WALES 2-2 IVORY COAST
Tournoi Maurice Revello
- Monday, 5 June 2017
- Stade de Lattre, Aubagne
- Goals: George Thomas (8, 80+2)
Rob Page made four changes to the team that started against Bahrain, with three of those alterations coming in defence.
Cole Dasilva and Aaron Lewis made way in the full back positions, with Cameron Coxe and Rhys Abbruzzese both returning to the starting line-up, while Brentford’s Chris Mepham made his first appearance of the tournament in place of Cian Harries.
The only other change was up front as Tyler Roberts replaced Mark Harris in attack.
And it was Page’s side who started brightly and took an eighth minute lead as Jack Evans clipped a lovely ball over the defence for George Thomas, who controlled superbly before firing low beyond Moustapha El Dante.
It almost got better for Wales just three minutes later as Tyler Roberts cut in from the left to curl an effort at goal, but it was headed away from danger just in front of the goal line.
It was proving a physical contest in the early stages as three Ivory Coast players picked up yellow cards, while the only real effort they could muster was a long range shot from Arnaud Loba that bobbled well wide of goal.
Wales could have extended their lead before the interval, however, as Nathan Broadhead fired a shot wide from distance after being teed up by Thomas.
And the latter was involved again as Page’s side started the second period where they left off, as Daniel James picked him out with a fine cross to the far post but the winger could only head it wide.
Despite that, the Ivory Coast came back into the game as Wilfried Gnoukouri curled an effort wide before they went on to equalise on 51 minutes as Tiehi powerfully headed home a cross from the right.
But Wales were almost back in front in a matter of minutes as a Daniel James cross was met by Swansea team-mate Joe Rodon, but the skipper couldn’t keep his effort down as he headed a fraction over the bar.
However, it was the Ivory Coast who went on to take the lead as substitute Jean Phillipe Krasso turned and fired home from 18 yards with just 17 minutes to play.
Wales came back though and El Dante somehow saved superbly from Daniel James and George Thomas as they sought a crucial equaliser.
And as the clocked ticked into added time, they got their just rewards as Thomas picked up a loose ball in the box before firing past the goalkeeper.
Wales must now wait on the outcome of the final round of group matches on Tuesday (June 6) before knowing whether they have secured a place in the last four.
WALES: Luke Pilling, Cameron Coxe, Chris Mepham, Joe Rodon (capt), Rhys Abbruzzese, Jack Evans, Regan Poole, Daniel James (Aaron Lewis, 78), George Thomas, Nathan Broadhead (Liam Cullen, 61), Tyler Roberts (Mark Harris, 61).
SUBS: Lewis Thomas, Cole Dasilva, Aaron Lewis, Cian Harries, Keiran Evans, Lloyd Humphries, Rhyle Ovenden.