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Belgium are the top side in the Pinatar Cup, ranked 20th in the world, 13 places above Wales

Wales’ hopes of lifting the Pinatar Cup were ended as they were beaten by Belgium in a penalty shoot-out.

Wales were impressive in a competitive 0-0 draw but misses by Charlie Estcourt, Lily Woodham and Angharad James saw them beaten 3-1 on penalties.

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Wales can be pleased with their display at a blustery Pinatar Arena as they held the tournament’s top-ranked team.

Substitute Megan Wynne missed Wales’ best chance while Sarah Wijnants struck the post for Belgium.

Belgium will now play Russia in Tuesday’s final, while Wales will face Republic of Ireland who lost 1-0 to Russia in the other semi-final.

Wales boss Gemma Grainger opted to rotate her squad, despite Belgium being tough opponents, as she keeps her focus primarily on Wales’ World Cup qualifying campaign.

Goalkeeper Olivia Clark came into the side for just her third cap, while Estcourt and Woodham were drafted into a new-look Wales defence.

Orlando Pride midfielder James was also a starter after arriving to the camp late, meaning she was a substitute as Wales beat holders Scotland 3-1 in their opening match, while Carrie Jones was given a chance to impress as an attacking midfielder.

It was Wales who fashioned the first chance of the contest as Jess Fishlock – who scored twice against Scotland – saw her effort fly just over the crossbar.

Belgium created very little in the first half with Wales defending resolutely and only Marie Minnaert’s miss from close range caused them a scare.

Wales ended the half on the front foot with Fishlock’s shot from distance saved by Diede Lemey at the second attempt.

Grainger made two further changes at half-time with Gemma Evans and Ffion Morgan introduced and Morgan’s first contribution was a fine cross that Kayleigh Green headed at Lemey.

Belgium did not fully test 20-year old goalkeeper Clark until the hour mark when James uncharacteristically gave the ball away and Wijnants shot powerfully at goal, with Clark tipping the ball away at full stretch.

Clark also averted a dangerous corner with the wind swirling, while Rhiannon Roberts did well to block Minnaert’s shot.

The wind made defending set-pieces extremely difficult and Green might have done better with a header from a corner on 65 minutes, but she could not keep her effort on target, while at the other end Wijnants fired wide in a crowded penalty area.

Wijnants was a constant threat and her cross struck the base of the post with Clark beaten as Belgium sent on several of their more established players in search of a winning goal.

Manchester United’s Chloe Williams was given her debut and she was involved in a flowing move that culminated in a perfect cross from Woodham, but substitute Wynne shot just wide as she stretched to turn the ball home with six minutes remaining.

Belgium substitute Jarne Teulings curled just wide with a minute of normal time remaining, but Wales held firm to earn a penalty shoot-out.

Wales made an ideal start as Green scored and Minnaert struck the post, but Wales missed their next three kicks and can now only finish third.

Line-ups

Belgium

Formation 4-3-3

11Cayman19Kees18De Neve22Deloose

6De Caigny20Biesmans16Minnaert

15Janssens14Daniels5Wijnants

  • 12Lemey
  • 11CaymanBooked at 34mins
  • 19Kees
  • 18De Neve

    Substituted forTysiakat 64’minutes

  • 22Deloose

    Substituted forPhiltjensat 65’minutesBooked at 74mins

  • 6De Caigny

    Substituted forOnziaat 65’minutes

  • 20Biesmans

    Substituted forBlomat 64’minutes

  • 16Minnaert
  • 15Janssens

    Substituted forTeulingsat 72’minutes

  • 14Daniels

    Substituted forEurlingsat 71’minutes

  • 5Wijnants

Substitutes

  • 1Evrard
  • 2Philtjens
  • 3Blom
  • 4Tysiak
  • 7Vanwynsberghe
  • 8Onzia
  • 13Eurlings
  • 17Iliano
  • 21Lichtfus
  • 23Teulings

Wales

Formation 4-2-3-1

16Estcourt5Roberts4Ingle2Woodham

11Harding20Jones18Holland

  • 12Clark
  • 16Estcourt
  • 5Roberts
  • 4IngleBooked at 28mins
  • 2Woodham
  • 10FishlockBooked at 49mins

    Substituted forWilliamsat 78’minutes

  • 8James
  • 11Harding

    Substituted forWynneat 64’minutes

  • 20Jones

    Substituted forEvansat 45’minutesBooked at 86mins

  • 18Holland

    Substituted forMorganat 45’minutes

  • 9Green

Substitutes

  • 1O’Sullivan
  • 3Evans
  • 6Bull
  • 7Ward
  • 15Hughes
  • 19Wynne
  • 21Soper
  • 22Filbey
  • 23Morgan
  • 24Walters
  • 25Williams
  • 26Rogers

Match Stats

Live Text

  1. Match ends, Belgium Women 0(3), Wales Women 0(1).

  2. Penalty Shootout ends, Belgium Women 0(3), Wales Women 0(1).

  3. Penalty saved! Angharad James (Wales Women) fails to capitalise on this great opportunity, right footed shot saved in the bottom left corner.

  4. Goal! Belgium Women 0(3), Wales Women 0(1). Janice Cayman (Belgium Women) converts the penalty with a right footed shot to the bottom right corner.

  5. Penalty saved! Lily Woodham (Wales Women) fails to capitalise on this great opportunity, left footed shot saved in the bottom right corner.

  6. Goal! Belgium Women 0(2), Wales Women 0(1). Hannah Eurlings (Belgium Women) converts the penalty with a right footed shot to the bottom right corner.

  7. Penalty saved! Charlie Estcourt (Wales Women) fails to capitalise on this great opportunity, right footed shot saved in the bottom left corner.

  8. Goal! Belgium Women 0(1), Wales Women 0(1). Jassina Blom (Belgium Women) converts the penalty with a left footed shot to the bottom left corner.

  9. Goal! Belgium Women 0, Wales Women 0(1). Kayleigh Green (Wales Women) converts the penalty with a right footed shot to the bottom left corner.

  10. Penalty missed! Still Belgium Women 0, Wales Women 0. Marie Minnaert (Belgium Women) hits the left post with a right footed shot.

  11. Penalty Shootout begins Belgium Women 0, Wales Women 0.

  12. Second Half ends, Belgium Women 0, Wales Women 0.

  13. Offside, Wales Women. Kayleigh Green tries a through ball, but Ffion Morgan is caught offside.

  14. Offside, Wales Women. Rhiannon Roberts tries a through ball, but Ffion Morgan is caught offside.

  15. Attempt missed. Hannah Eurlings (Belgium Women) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by Jarne Teulings following a corner.

  16. Corner, Belgium Women. Conceded by Charlie Estcourt.

  17. Gemma Evans (Wales Women) is shown the yellow card.

  18. Jassina Blom (Belgium Women) wins a free kick on the right wing.

  19. Foul by Lily Woodham (Wales Women).

  20. Attempt missed. Megan Wynne (Wales Women) right footed shot from the right side of the six yard box is close, but misses to the right. Assisted by Lily Woodham with a cross.