Wales' 2-1 win over Slovakia to open their first major tournament since the 1958 World Cup was not only an historic moment in the country's history, but a true reward for the great support the team received both in France and back home.
Before the match got underway, the fans joined the players in the singing of Hen Wlad Fy Nhadhau, Wales' national anthem. Bale later remarked in a post-match interview that "it felt like a home game."
Good start for Wales... Jonny Williams & Joe Allen popping it! National Anthem #Euro2016 #Wal pic.twitter.com/MJP9toRUE2— Jake Mallen (@_JMallen) June 11, 2016
The Wales fans that made it to Bordeaux, but did not make it into the stadium, managed to create a scintillating environment themselves, singing the anthem on the streets of the city.
The fans were rewarded in the tenth minute, when Gareth Bale scored a gorgeous freekick. Fans not only rejoiced in Bordeaux as their team scored their first ever European Championship goal, but did so also at the Fan Zone in Cardiff.
Wales fans celebrating Bale's goal in Cardiff's fanzone pic.twitter.com/WotWgCaK9l— Limbs AOTS (@Limbs_AOTS) June 11, 2016
Wales supporters also paid tribute to former player and coach Gary Speed, who passed away in 2011, singing "there's only one Gary Speed." They belted the national anthem again after Slovakia's Ondrej Duda scored, encouraging their team to continue with less than half an hour on the clock. It seemed to work, as substitute Hal Robson-Kanu scored the game winner in the 81st minute.
Welsh fans and players go wild at Robson-Kanu's goal https://t.co/lKFHXj972n #WAL #EURO2016 pic.twitter.com/CZMJig756y— Anthony Joseph (@DMAnthonyJoseph) June 11, 2016
Found singing "Please Don't Take Me Home" as they were leaving Stade Matmut Atlantique, the Wales fans could not hide their joy as they celebrated an historic day in their country's history. A fair reward for an outstanding performance over the 90 minutes.
Some v happy #Wales fans singing: "Don't take me home! Please don't take me home!"#WAL#TogetherStronger#EURO2016 pic.twitter.com/63kmvthWZl— Katie Dalton (@Katie_Dalton) June 11, 2016