A 1-1 draw between Wales and Croatia is what the scoreboard read in Cardiff, but the real damage was the pair of early substitutions, with Mateo Kovačić and Ethan Ampadu both subbed off before the 50th minute with apparent injuries.
Both Chelsea midfielders started the Euro 2020 qualifier as the two teams looked to take a step closer towards next summer’s tournament. The draw helps Croatia more, as Wales will need to win both of their remaining games now.
Croatia took the early lead, but Wales equalized in first-half added on time after Kieffer Moore fouled Kovačić in midfield to win the ball, leading to Gareth Bale’s good finish. Adding the literal injury to insult was Kovačić having to make way for Barcelona’s Ivan Rakitić at half-time. Hopefully the injury is just an impact bruise rather than any sort of twist or strain of the knee or quad.
And if that wasn’t enough, Chelsea loanee Ethan Ampadu, who’s already been struggling for playing time at RB Leipzig, was taken off five minutes into the second-half after suffering an apparent head injury in a clash of heads with an over-aggressive Bruno Petković, who was booked for his troubles.
Ampadu now down after head clash with Petkovic, who has been booked. Looks like it will be the end of his night— Laurie Whitwell (@lauriewhitwell) October 13, 2019
So, if you’re keeping track, that Reece James, N’Golo Kanté, Andreas Christensen, Mateo Kovačić, and Ethan Ampadu all picking up injuries of some sort in the last week.
[FUN] the international break.