LENS, FRANCE – JUNE 16: Gareth Bale (C) of Wales celebrates scoring his team’s first goal with his team mates during the UEFA EURO 2016 Group B match between England and Wales at Stade Bollaert-Delelis on June 16, 2016 in Lens, France. (Photo by Matthias Hangst/Getty Images)

WATCH: Gareth Bale scores long-range free kick against England

A largely uneventful first half in Lens was punctuated by a moment of magic from Welsh superstar Gareth Bale, as he hit a free-kick from distance that beat Joe Hart.

Neither Wales nor England generated much during the first half, though England did enjoy the majority of possession. England couldn’t do much with the ball, and apart from a Raheem Sterling miss, the English had trouble breaking down the Welsh defense.

Bale’s goal was against the run of play in some respects, but that won’t matter to the Real Madrid star, who spent much of the match’s run up talking up his side’s chances against their United Kingdom neighbors.

England will have to do a lot better in the second half, because the side’s forward line wasn’t able to generate enough. Sterling, in particular, was in poor form, as he missed the best chance for England. He was subbed off at the start of the second half. Every other chance created by England in that half fell to defenders on set pieces, as the Three Lions had trouble in attack all half.

Subbing in Jamie Vardy and Daniel Sturridge in the second half seemed to work as Jamie Vardy equalized early in the second half with about a half hour left to play.

About Phillip Bupp

Producer/editor of the Awful Announcing Podcast and Short and to the Point. News editor for The Comeback and Awful Announcing. Highlight consultant for Major League Soccer as well as a freelance writer for hire. Opinions are my own but feel free to agree with them. Follow me on Twitter and Instagram @phillipbupp