How can Wales qualify for the knockout stages of the World Cup?

“A storm, a red storm, is coming at the gates of Qatar,” Michael Sheen promised in a poignant address to the Welsh national team ahead of their first World Cup appearance since 1958.

Encouraged by the “spirit of ’58,” Rob Page’s team puts on a fighting show as they return to the grandest scenes in all sports.

A 1-1 draw with the United States gives Wales hope of qualifying for the knockout stages. They have everything to play for and fans will dream of a Euro 2016 trip in Qatar.

The moment Welsh football fans have been waiting for 64 years has arrived on Monday night as they take on the United States in an even match on the cards.

However, it was the USA who dominated the first half and took a deserved lead through Timothy Weah before the break.

The introduction of target man Kiefer Moore at half time inspired Page’s men, who excelled for much of the second half. Moore and Ben Davies both came close to equalizing before their previously quiet champions won and scored the subsequent penalty with ten minutes left.

Gareth BaleThe emphatic penalty caused an entire nation to roar as Wales picked up a point in the first round.

Wales will fancy their chances of defeating Iran in the second round after they beat England 6-2. While the Welsh lack the quality of Gareth Southgate’s Lions three, they will feel more than capable of snatching the victory they need on Friday 25 November.

Then comes a tough test in the form of England to round out the group. While they will no doubt be desperate to beat their neighbours, Southgate’s side started the tournament in ominous form.

Wales wants England to do him a favor in round two against the USA. If England win and beat Iran, Wales will have a three-point lead over the USA going into their final group match.

Two wins would see Wales advance to Group B, while four points from the next two matches would put them in a great position to qualify. The United States would need to match that size and boast a superior goal difference to outpace Welsh in this scenario.

Three draws might be enough if England beat the United States and draw the latter with Iran in the third round.

In a group that is poised to be an incredibly tight group, Wales will know that just one win may be enough to advance to the round of 16. Their second round encounter with Iran will be hugely important in determining the composition of Group B.

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