Wales coach Chris Coleman believes his side can build on their magnificent Euro 2016 campaign, despite falling out of the tournament on Wednesday.
Wales defied expectations as they went all the way to the semi-finals of the tournament, eventually falling to Portugal 2-0, as they conceded twice in a fatal three-minute spell.
But Coleman is confident there will be more to come from his side in the future.
‘That first goal was crucial,’ said Coleman.
‘The first half was tight but we never found our rhythm and momentum. We found it difficult to open the game up but credit goes to Portugal. We lost our concentration for five minutes and when you do that against a side like Portugal you’re going to get punished. Congratulations to Portugal: I hope they go on and win the final.
‘I’m immensely proud of the team.
‘It’s incredible what they’ve done and how they’ve performed. If you lose and you’ve given your best, that’s how it goes. But the end of the tournament is not the end for this team – they’ll be around for a long time.
‘It’s been a great experience. A nation is proud of them and, given time, they will be proud of themselves. I’ve loved every minute of it.’
The coach has now turned his attention to the World Cup, which will take place in Russia in two years time.
‘We’re good enough. We have to be hungry, we have to have the same hunger and desire, and we’ll give the World Cup campaign a hell of a crack.
‘I’ve told them I’m proud of them, the nation’s proud of them. Tomorrow they’ll be proud of themselves,’ Coleman concluded.
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