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06th Jun 2022

Martin Tyler issues apology for comment on Ukraine goalkeeper


Tyler apologised after realising his choice of words may have appeared insensitive

Martin Tyler issued an instant apology for a comment made about Ukraine’s Heorhiy Bushchan during Wales’ World Cup playoff victory in Cardiff on Sunday.

The goalkeeper briefly appeared to have injured his ankle when punching clear an early Welsh cross, prompting Tyler, whose commentary accompanied both Sky Sports and ITV coverage of the game, to say he would have to “soldier on”.

Realising his choice of words may have appeared insensitive given recent events in Bushchan’s war-torn homeland, the 76-year-old quickly added: “Apologies if I’ve used that word inappropriately there.”

Tyler’s choice of words – though completely innocent – was quickly picked up on by many of those watching the game.

Wales booked place in first World Cup since 1958

The game itself saw Wales claim victory by a single goal. The decisive moment came when Gareth Bale’s free-kick ten minutes from half-time found its way past Bushchan after skidding off the head of West Ham’s Andriy Yarmolenko.

The win means Wales have qualified for their first World Cup in 64 years.

martin tyler ukraine

The full-time whistle sparked joyous scenes inside the Cardiff City Stadium, with Rob Page and his players jubilant at reaching Qatar.

In contrast, there were tears from some of Ukraine’s players, who came agonisingly close to reaching the finals despite the exceptionally difficult circumstances faced by their team.

Bale and Page on World Cup qualification

Speaking to Sky Sports after full-time, Bale described the win as the greatest result in Welsh footballing history.

“We’re going to a World Cup,” he said. “It means everything, what dreams are made of, we’ve been working towards it since I first came in here.

“Words can’t describe how we feel at the moment.”

Asked if he may now choose to postpone any plans he may have had to retire, the Wales talisman replied: “Maybe for a little bit!”

His manager added: “I’m so proud of the guys, they thoroughly deserved it. The one thing these boys were missing was a World Cup and now we’ve got there.

“These are the best supporters in world football, they helped us from the first minute.

“When you see what these guys do in training, I had full trust in them.”

Wales’ victory means they complete the lineup for World Cup Group B, which also contains England.

They will face the USA in their opening game of the tournament on November 21 before playing Iran four days later. Their meeting with the Three Lions takes place on November 29 and will be their final game of the group stage.

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