5 things we learned from Wales' victory over Belgium


Wales are through to the Euro 2016 semi-finals after an historic 3-1 victory against Belgium.

Here, sport reporter Simon Peach picks out five things we learned during a memorable night at the Stade Pierre-Mauroy.

1. Ramsey is a star

Aaron Ramsey
(Joe Giddens/PA)

Gareth Bale is one of the world's best players and key to Wales, but sometimes that overshadows the impact made by Aaron Ramsey. The Arsenal midfielder was exceptional again for his country in Lille, providing the assists for Ashley Williams and Hal Robson-Kanu. Clever both on and off the ball, he was Wales' star man at the Stade Pierre-Mauroy.

2. He and Davies will be missed

Ben davies gets carded
(Frank Augstein/AP)

That makes his late booking all the more frustrating. Ramsey and Ben Davies will miss Wednesday's semi-final against Portugal through suspension. A harsh-looking fifth-minute yellow card rules out Davies and Ramsey pulled the shirt over his head after following him into the notebook with 15 minutes remaining.

3. Williams is decent at set pieces after all

Wales' Ashley Williams, left, celebrates after scoring his side's first goal
(Frank Augstein/AP)

The defences of Swansea and Wales have been criticised for their struggles at set pieces, but Ashley Williams has always had the attributes to impress in those situations. The skipper showed that in Lille by not only keeping Belgium quiet but providing an attacking threat, running amok at corners and powering home a first-half leveller - just his second international goal.

4. Belgium's golden generation struggled

Belgium's Eden Hazard walks on the pitch during t
(Michel Spingler/AP)

Remember England's so-called Golden Generation? Well, there seems to a similar pattern with the Belgian equivalent. A side boasting talent like Kevin De Bruyne, Eden Hazard and Romelu Lukaku shone in patches, but were unable to provide the answers when called upon. All too quickly Marc Wilmots' men began lumping the ball forwards, praying for answers that never came.

5. Teams beat groups of individuals

Wales' players and coaching staff celebrate after the final whistle during the UEFA Euro 2016
(Joe Giddens/PA)

Just like Monday night - when Iceland, a country with a population the size of Leicester, beat England - a group outplayed a collection of individuals. Outsmarting, out-battling and out-thinking their opposition, Chris Coleman's men worked as a unit and deservedly secured victory. That togetherness is seen off the field, too, and runs through the whole set-up.