Danny Ward features in Wales' Euro 2016 opener against Slovakia

The youngster was thrown in the deep end as made his debut tournament for his country.

Danny Ward features in Wales' Euro 2016 opener against Slovakia
The young goalkeeper did well to fill in for the injured Wayne Hennessey (image: Getty)

Danny Ward was handed a rare opportunity as he was thrust into Chris Coleman's starting XI following an injury to regular number one Wayne Hennessey.

Wales managed to cling on to a 2-1 win to claim all three points against their Group B rivals Slovakia in a tense opener to their Euro 2016 campaign.

Ward done his best to deny the powerful Slovakian attack (image: getty)
Ward done his best to deny the powerful Slovakian attack (image: getty)

Ward 'thrown in deep end'

The 22-year-old has now made more appearances for his national side than his club as his fellow internationals secured a 2-1 win over fellow Liverpool teammate Martin Skrtel's Slovakia. An early goal from Gareth Bale followed by a late winner from Hal Robson-Kanu handed the advantage to The Dragons.

With regular start Crystal Palace's Hennessey suffering an injury setback he was ruled out of the game at the Nouveau Stade de Bordeaux with the inexperienced Ward taking his place.

The Liverpool goalkeeper who spent time on-loan at Aberdeen this season did relatively well on the grand stage as Wales claimed their first victory in the finals of a European Championship with Joe Allen also featuring as an important cog in Coleman's side.

Despite failing to keep a clean sheet he was at little fault as Ondrej Duda's strike crept into his near post as the midfielder strolled past several red shirts to set himself up for an easy strike on goal. 

Wales are set to square up against UK rivals England in their next match on Thursday 16 June, Hennessey will undergo a late fitness test before the match but if failed, Ward will protect the goalposts against the Three Lions.

Martin Skrtel was lucky to see out the entire 90 minutes without a redcard (image: Getty)
Martin Skrtel was lucky to see out the entire 90 minutes without a redcard (image: Getty)

Sorrow for Skrtel

With his future at Liverpool already in doubt, Martin Skrtel did little to reassert confidence as the veteran was given a horrendous time by the Wales attack and was lucky to have remained on the field. 

The Slovakian captain threw a vicious elbow towards Johnny Williams as he crept past him and was lucky that the officials failed to witness the foul as it would have resulted in the no.3 beings promptly dismissed and a penalty awarded to the side in red.

The yellow card eventually found its way to the Liverpool defender late on in stoppage time as he was booked for a cynical foul on Ben Davies