Club loyalties will be laid to one side on Friday night as Wales face Belgium in the quarter-final of EURO 2016.
The game in Lille kicks off at 8pm BST and will see Wales’ Joe Allen and Danny Ward go up against Belgium’s Divock Origi, Simon Mignolet, and Christian Benteke.
Realistically, neither Mignolet nor Ward are likely to see game time, and Origi and Benteke will almost certainly have to settle for a late substitute role. Only Joe Allen – who has been widely hailed as one of the tournament’s stand-out performers – will be in the starting elevens.
Nonetheless, it’s great to see so many of our players still involved at the business end of the competition. Emre Can is also still involved for Germany (who play Italy on Saturday), though Martin Skrtel’s Slovakia went out in the last 16 against Can’s Germany, and we won’t mention what happened to the English quintet…
Wales have never reached the semi-final of a major tournament; their previous best was a quarter-final appearance at the 1958 World Cup. They lost 1-0 to Brazil thanks to a Pele goal midway the second half as their opponents went on to take the title – their first ever World Cup win.