Ryan Giggs and co have a mountain to climb in order to qualify for next year’s Euros.
Hungary take the spoils and put themselves in a strong position in the group along with Croatia and Slovakia. It wasn’t a game of great excitement or high quality, the play was punctuated with plenty of free kicks and stoppages.
Wales were decent at times in possession without threatening regularly but they will rue Bale’s missed chance at 1-0. On the plus side, there were some decent performances from Ethan Ampadu, Daniel James, Ashley Williams, Joe Allen and Ben Davies.
This has the appearance of a time of transition for Wales after the highs of the recent past. Is Giggs the man to take the country forward? Can Bale regain his mojo?
Wales are not out of it as far as qualification goes but it has now become a big ask after no points from their last two away games.
Here is how we rated the Wales players after the game.
Wayne Hennessey - 6
Mostly reliable when called upon. Saved well from a long-range effort. Involved in a mix up from a Hungarian corner.
Chris Gunter - 6
Early harsh booking, closing in on his 100th cap. Not too much offered going forward.
Ben Davies - 7
Probably looking forward to a break after a long season, also due to have a groin operation this summer. Always a good performer for Wales. This was no different. Silly but deserved booking late on.
Ashley Williams - 7
Solid from the veteran. Along with Davies, Wales’ best defender on the night.
James Lawrence - 5.5
A bit flat footed on one occasion when Hungary attacked during the first half, also caught out of position at times. Muscled out of it in the build-up to the goal.
Joe Allen - 7
Couldn’t get his half volley chance on target, was his usual industrious self, providing a good defensive screen alongside Chelsea’s Ampadu. Fantastic goal-line clearance second half which was ultimately in vain.
Gareth Bale - 5.5
Assisted with some defensive clearances, quiet in attack, missed a golden chance during the second half, which sums up a poor season by his high standards.
David Brooks - 6
Fluffed a free kick in a mix up with Manchester United new boy James. Had some good creative moments before coming off with just over 15 minutes left to play.
Ethan Ampadu - 7
Played in the ‘quarterback’ position in midfield with some nice diagonal balls. Strong in the challenge. A minor back injury forced him off early in the second half.
Tom Lawrence - 5.5
His shot needed to be further in the corner when set up by James in the first half. He set up Bale for Wales’ best chance but ultimately, didn’t do enough.
Dan James - 7.5
Showed his pace down the left wing when setting up a first-half chance and had Hungary’s defence backtracking when in possession. Wales’ best attacking threat.
Matt Smith - 6
On for Ampadu. No glaring mistakes. Mainly screening the defence and linking play.
Harry Wilson - 6
Wilson came on for Brooks and had a couple of decent crosses late on.
Sam Vokes - 6
The Burnley man was not able to influence proceedings in a late cameo performance.