Gareth Bale led Wales to their first World Cup since 1958 because their dream of raising the spirits of the war-torn country of Ukraine was brutally denied by a 1-0 defeat in Cardiff on Sunday.
Bell’s free-kick, which was dominated by Ukrainian captain Andrei Yarmolenko, was dominated by spectators at Cardiff City Stadium.
Ukraine made a nation proud by beating Scotland 3-1 on Wednesday in their first competitive clash since the Russian attack.
The men of Alexander Petrakov deserved much more than another exceptionally composed performance under the pressure of carrying the hopes of the people devastated by the Russian aggression.
The Ukrainian national anthem was praised around the stadium before the game, and just as during their trip to Scotland in the middle of the week, the spectators were inspired by the pressure on them.
However, for not taking their chances and for a moment of misfortune they had to pay an exceptionally heavy price.
Alexander Jinchenko found the net just three minutes later, but the Manchester City man took his free-kick which was thought to have caught Wayne Hennessy from the keeper very quickly.
Hennessy then had to be careful before Roman Yaremchuk could start scoring before Victor Sigankov extended a glorious chance.
Wales had just threatened a Ukrainian goal, but Belle has a star who could change the course of the match in an instant.
The 32-year-old brought the nine-year-old to the screen after winning his fifth Champions League title at Real Madrid last weekend.
Bell has saved his best for international responsibilities in recent years and will now have the opportunity to add a World Cup to a glorious career.
In the 34th minute his free-kick went off the target until Yarmolenko tried to head it safely and only managed to deflect the ball to the helpless Georgie Bushchan.
Ukraine refused to be crushed by that misfortune and it was unfortunate not to get a penalty when Joe Allen clipped Yarmolenko inside the box just before half time.
The pattern continued into the second half as Rob Page’s men were pinned in their own half.
But the home side had a big chance to double their advantage in the counter-attack when Aaron Ramsey steered wide, Brennan Johnson hit the post and Bell humbly shot Bushchan’s arm.
At the other end, opportunities kept coming and going as Yaremchuk defended Hennessy Hennessy before widening the rebound.
An end-ditch challenge from Ben Davis then blocks the shot at redemption to Yarmolenko.
Ukraine’s day was shortened to five minutes from the time when Hennessy made an incredible save to prevent substitute Artem Dwivedi’s header from being found in the top corner.
But Wales are now unbeaten in 19 home games as they roared by a majority of 33,000 spectators for almost four years for a reason.
The last time Wales beat World Cup quarter-finalists was in the quarter-finals of Wales, with a goal from Brazil.
This generation of Welsh players has achieved the seemingly impossible by reaching the semifinals of Euro 2016 in their first major tournament in 58 years.
With the opportunity to face England, the United States and Iran in Qatar in November, they have now written themselves once again in the history books.
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