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Published: 22:07 | 20/6/16

Superb Wales beat England to top spot

Wales destroy Russians at Euro 2016, while Slovakia hold English

Wales defeated Russia 3-0 to secure first place in Group B at the European Championship, with England held to a scoreless draw by Slovakia.

Chris Coleman’s men finish on the top of the pool with six points, as England were restricted to second place, while a four-point haul for Slovakia provides a decent chance of progressing to the knockout phase in France.

The reward for Wales is a meeting in the last 16 with the third-placed team from either Group A, Group D or Group C.

Roy Hodgson's troops, meanwhile, will take on the nation that comes over the line second in Group F - Hungary, Iceland, Portugal and Austria are all in the mix - in the next round.

England were held to a frustrating 0-0 draw by a determined and defensive Slovakia in Saint-Etienne.

The Three Lions dominated almost the entire affair at Stade Geoffroy-Guichard, creating a host of goal-scoring opportunities, but could not find a way past the impressively resolute Slovakia defence.

Jamie Vardy and Daniel Sturridge, goalscorers in England's dramatic victory over Wales, were brought in to start for England, and both threatened the Slovakia goal early on.

Vardy built on his strong start and looked set to open the scoring when put through over the top by Jordan Henderson, but Matus Kozacik bravely blocked the Leicester City striker's attempt.

Kozacik also denied Adam Lallana, with the English bossing affairs, but Slovakia managed to hold on to the interval.

A mix-up between Chris Smalling and Joe Hart almost allowed Robert Mak to bag a shock lead for the underdogs early in the second period.

The English survived, and only a fine Kozacik save prevented Nathaniel Clyne from scoring following Sturridge's superbly weighted pass. Clyne, indeed, could have had a penalty for being clipped by Vladimir Weiss in shooting at the target.

Liverpool's Martin Skrtel cleared off his own goal-line from an attempt by substitute Dele Alli, before Sturridge was unable to connect sufficiently with an excellent lofted pass from Eric Dier.

England threw everything that they had at their opponents in the closing stages. Slovakia, however, defended magnificently to secure a point.

Jan Kozak and his men will expect to have done enough to book a tie, albeit most likely a very difficult encounter, in the next phase.

Wales sparkled in hammering Russia 3-0 in Toulouse to ultimately finish at the top of the group.

Aaron Ramsey calmly converted Joe Allen's fine pass to open the scoring, prior to Neil Taylor scoring his first Wales goal by forcing in a rebound.

Gareth Bale sealed the three points for the Welsh with a poked finish midway through the second half.

Early on at Stadium Municipal, Bale tested Igor Akinfeev before Ramsey sent Wales ahead, the Arsenal man lifting a neat finish over the Russian goalkeeper from Allen's accurate through-ball.

Wales extended their advantage when left-wing-back Taylor was put clean in on goal by a fortunate ricochet and, after his weak initial attempt was stopped by Akinfeev, kept his composure to net the rebound.

Wales continued to dominate, with Sam Vokes missing a decent chance, although Wayne Hennessey did extremely well to prevent Artem Dzyuba from reducing Russia's deficit against the run of play.

With Bale a constant danger, Wales continued their superiority into the second half, and the Real Madrid forward eventually netted by nudging the ball past the advancing Akinfeev after impressive set-up work from Chris Gunter and Ramsey.

Dzyuba had an excellent late chance for Russia but he was unable to take any of the gloss off a superb Welsh performance.

The night may well go down as the greatest in Wales’s international football history, and Coleman’s side looks capable of causing severe problems for any challenger as the tournament progresses.

Russia end the group stage with one point, confirming their elimination from the tournament.

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