Osijek: Leading the world cup Croatia moved to the top of their Euro 2020 qualifying group, as Ivan Perisic played in a clinical 2-1 win over Wales in Osijek on Saturday.
Inter Milan winger Perisic was involved in both goals, set up the first when James Lawrence made a cross in his own net and the second scored just after the break before substitute David Brooks hit the visitors.
The victory served as a useful response for the men of Zlatko Dalic who unexpectedly lost to Hungary in their last match in the campaign.
"These are three major points, we said before the competition that it was important to win them." It was hard to watch, let alone play, but we have achieved our goal, "Dalic told Nova TV.
"The last 15 minutes of the game were not under control, the Welsh could have made it right," he added.
"It's hard to be left behind in such a game, but we've worked hard on it," Wales midfielder Joe Allen told Welsh channel S4C.
"David Brooks came on, brought us back into the game with a goal and we created enough chances for a second and a point," added Allen, who won his 50th international cap.
The Croats receive Tunisia in a friendly way on Tuesday as Wales goes to Budapest to play Hungary.
The other game of the group with five teams, including Slovakia, sees the Hungarians traveling to Azerbaijan later on Saturday.
The home team received the opening goal for the game after fifteen minutes.
They broke through a counterattack and Real Madrid & Luka Modric led the influential Perisic in open space on the left.
The unmarked Perisic looked up and bent his cross towards Andrej Kramaric on the spot, with a backtracking by Lawrence bending the ball past Wayne Hennessey.
The semi-finalists of Euro 2016 had a chance to tie with four minutes of the first half to play.
Winger Daniel James, who agreed to join Manchester United this week, threw a ball into the box, but Dinamo Zagreb goalkeeper Dominik Livakovic cleared his mistake.
The Croats doubled their lead after less than three minutes of the second half.
Again Welsh midfield lost the ball sloppy, Allen followed to send straight to Perisic in the box and his low right foot shot slid past Hennessey.
Brooks halved the deficit with his first international goal at 77 minutes.
He jumped from outside the box and the powerful attempt brought Domagoj Vida & # 39; s head to the flat feet of Livakovic.
Liverpool's winger, Harry Wilson, had the perfect opportunity to bring the team to the late level, but his 88th minute header went over the bar.