Gareth Bale said the Wales fans made him feel right at home in France as he scored a “memorable” goal in Saturday’s “historic” 2-1 win over Slovakia.
The Real Madrid star opened the scoring with a dipping free kick in the first half.
Bale Celebrating his goal ( Picture Courtesy -UEFA/Getty)
Asked by the BBC how he ranked his strike alongside other top goals in his career, Bale said: “The goal is right up there. A memorable moment, a historic moment for our country. The most important thing is we got the three points.”
Slovakia later cancelled out Bale’s strike, but substitute Hal Robson-Kanu’s 81st-minute winner delivered three points for Wales.
“Hal to get the winner is amazing,” Bale said. “The subs have to make an impact and he was amazing when he came on. Everyone has a part to play and we will keep fighting.”
Bale also credited the travelling Wales supporters, who watched the team playing in a major tournament for the first time since the 1958 World Cup.
“What can I say, it was like a home game,” he said. “Our fans are the best in the world and fully got behind us. We gave them something to celebrate.”
Robson-Kanu credited Aaron Ramsey with setting up his decisive goal.
“Rambo did great, opened a bit of space and I managed to direct it into the corner,” Robson-Kanu said. “It wasn’t the best finish but one we’re all happy about.”
The forward’s performance could help Robson-Kanu secure a new club after the expiry of his contract at Reading this month. But the 27-year-old said he’s only focused on Wales.
“It’s not something I’m thinking about right now,” he said about finding a new club. “It’s about the nation today and hopefully we can do them proud again as we have today.
“Our focus is on us, what we can do. England play later and it’s our next game so we will be fully focused on that.”
Wales manager Chris Coleman called the victory “my proudest moment.”
“Our supporters keep on topping what they have done — that support today was unbelievable,” he told the BBC. “When Slovakia got the equaliser, they were looking strong – they’re a good team, physical and play good football.
“In the second half the fans sensed we were a bit jaded and sitting back a bit. We came back and they got right behind us. Our boys showed passion and courage to come back. It was incredible attitude and mentality.”
Report courtesy to BBC Sport