After a disastrous summer which saw a 4-2 defeat at home to Armenia, followed by a disappointing 2-0 reverse in Istanbul against Turkey, Wales’ automatic qualification hopes looked to have been over.
With the Welsh manager’s future called into question from some parts, Page’s new young new breed of starlets have now roared back into contention with back-to-back victories over Latvia and the Eastern Europeans.
A second half double from Fulham forward Harry Wilson earning his 50th cap for his country proving to be enough to send the home fans into delirium as Wales surged above the World Cup semi-finalists into second place in the group standings.
On a memorable night in recent times in Welsh football, midfielder Mario Pasalic got one back with fifteen minutes to go for the visitors, but Wales would be resolute in defense in a nervy finale to put their progression hopes to the finals in Germany next summer firmly back in their own hands.
It will be by no means an easy feat, however, to pick up the two wins to guarantee a qualification top-two spot in the standings. Wins will be needed over Armenia in Yerevan next month and back in South Wales against leaders Turkey. On last night’s showing though Page feels his side are well equipped to complete the job.
“They’ve proven tonight that they can deliver a performance against a top team”, said Page.
“Since I have taken over, I can see the respect the players have for me, that they want to play for me, so I don’t need to say anything else outside of that.
“Let the players do the talking on the pitch. In my team talk before the game we showed them a montage of clips from the camp of training, the key principals and how we are going to play.
“I said to them in the changing room that it makes you emotional and the hairs on the back of your neck stand up when you see what they are capable of.
“That two-minute montage with music is incredible, I said to them go and show everyone what you’re capable of doing.
“Actions speak louder than words. Young JJ [Jordan James] has played like he’s a 30-year-old experienced professional against the best midfielder in World football.
“It’s an incredible achievement. I get emotional at times because I’m so proud of them. They deserve all the plaudits they’re going to get tonight.
“We cannot wait to get out there [against Armenia]. I got a group of players and staff that can’t wait to meet up and get ready for the next game.
[Lead image: Football Association of Wales]
Carmarthenshire GB Taekwondo star hopes Manchester Grand Prix can help inspire more people to pick up the sport
Swansea nurses meet King Charles during royal appointment
Llanelli politicians back alternative steel proposals as unions warn Tata’s current plans would mean closure of Trostre plant
Thieves target local cemeteries and disrupt water supplies
Big day at LC for city’s latest young sports ambassadors
Sea defence project reaches key milestone – for safety and sea life
Timings of goals the difference for Duff as Swans beaten at Leeds
Body found in search for missing Nantgaredig woman
Morriston Hospital under ‘exceptional pressures’ as over 80 emergency patients wait for beds
Revamped H Samuel shop shines bright in Swansea’s Quadrant Shopping Centre
Popular Swansea pub set for grand re-opening after £279,000 makeover
New light being shone on popular seafront promenade
Funding boost for Mumbles women’s fashion shop
Work completed on River Tawe pontoon
Aldi Fforestfach celebrates grand opening with help from Paralympian
Specsavers to invest more than £400,000 in new Mumbles store
Castle Square transformation takes new step
Photo treasure trove charts key decades in Swansea’s rich history
Free buses returning to Swansea for the festive period
Plans submitted for sustainable aviation fuel plant in Port Talbot
Carmarthen2 days ago
Council agrees sale of sprawling former asylum in Carmarthen
Bridgend3 days ago
Independent pharmacy chain pick up former Lloyds pharmacy branches
Llanelli6 days ago
Scarlets and Ospreys announce team for West Wales Derby
South Wales Police2 days ago
Three arrests after Mount Pleasant home attacked with ‘weapons’
Money1 day ago
Morriston receives banking hub following community request
Dyfed Powys Police6 days ago
Trimsaran ‘deluded and ill-tempered’ driver who ‘used car as a weapon’ is jailed
Swansea6 days ago
‘My Wife fell in love with a Life Size Cardboard Cut-out of Ronan Keating’: Quirky new play comes to Swansea
Neath2 days ago
New look for Victoria Gardens children’s play area is completed