MX23RW : Tuesday, February 19 01:37:39
Sep 2, 2017 at 7.45pm UK at ​Millennium Stadium
Attendance: 32,633
Wales
1-0
Austria
Woodburn (74')
FT(HT: 0-0)

Result: Ben Woodburn nets debut goal to keep Wales alive

Ben Woodburn scores a debut goal to give Wales a crucial 1-0 World Cup qualifying win over Austria at the Cardiff City Stadium.

Wales have picked up the three points required to remain in with a shout of qualifying for the 2018 World Cup, courtesy of Ben Woodburn's long-range strike to earn a 1-0 win over Austria.

The 17-year-old, who has been in and around the Liverpool first team of late, was introduced as a 68th-minute sub and netted soon after to settle a nervy contest at the Cardiff City Stadium.

Woodburn's goal lifts Wales to within two points of second-placed Republic of Ireland in Group D, while leaders Serbia are four points better off heading into the final three matches.

Wales forward Ben Woodburn scores on his international debut against Austria at the Principality Stadium on September 2, 2017© Offside

After dominating the opening 10 minutes without creating any openings, Wales were soon pushed back and were arguably fortunate not go into the break a goal down.

An Aaron Ramsey shot aside, which was always rising over the bar, it was the visiting side who looked the more likely to make a first-half breakthrough as Marko Arnautovic and David Alaba began to pull the strings.

Arnautovic saw a deflected cross fly narrowly wide of Wayne Hennessey's goal, before exchanging passes with Julian Baumgartlinger soon after to find himself through on goal.

The West Ham United attacker could only send the ball over the bar from a tight angle, however, and Marcel Sabitzer also sent a shot inches wide of the target.

Hennessey was called into action for the first time 41 minutes into the contest, getting down well to deny RB Leipzig forward Sabitzer after he turned and shot inside the box.

A change in formation at the break for the Dragons, seeing Andy King come on for Jazz Richards in a five-man midfield, initially worked well as Wales moved up a gear.

Ramsey's goalbound shot was blocked in front of the net by Martin Hinteregger and Gareth Bale tested Heinz Lindner for the first time just short of the hour mark.

Austria, unbeaten in their last four heading into this match, were continuing to look dangerous in patches but they were no longer in complete control as Ramsey burst forward and brought a fingertip stop out of Lindner.

Coleman turned to Hal Robson-Kanu and debutant Woodburn for the final quarter of the match in a desperate attempt to keep his side's qualifying campaign alive, following a previous run of five successive draws.

It took all of five minutes for Woodburn to mark his debut in stunning style, picking out the back of the net from 23 yards out to give Wales the lead they craved.

Arnautovic so nearly spoiled the party when working some space and seemingly getting the beating of Hennessey, only for Ashley Williams to block the ball with his head.

Austria struggled to create any real chances in the remaining time, with Robson-Kanu and Bale both coming close to rounding things off in the dying embers - the former being denied by the post from the final meaningful act.

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Wales defender Ashley Williams in action during his side's World Cup qualifier with Serbia on November 12, 2016
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Manchester CityMan City27212474205465
2Liverpool26205159154465
3Tottenham HotspurSpurs26200654252960
4Manchester UnitedMan Utd26156552351751
5Arsenal26155653371650
6Chelsea26155645291650
7Wolverhampton WanderersWolves2611693433139
8Watford2610793434037
9Everton2796123639-333
10West Ham UnitedWest Ham2696113239-733
11Bournemouth26103133747-1033
12Leicester CityLeicester2695123134-332
13Crystal Palace2676132734-727
14Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2676132839-1127
15Burnley2676132947-1827
16Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2667132234-1225
17Cardiff CityCardiff2674152447-2325
18Southampton2659122844-1624
19Fulham2645172558-3317
20Huddersfield TownHuddersfield2625191448-3411

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