Wales star Gareth Bale has declared the country’s qualification for the World Cup to be the greatest in its football history.
The principality beat Ukraine 1-0 in a play-off in Cardiff on Sunday night to clinch their place at this year’s tournament in Qatar.
It is the first time Wales have reached a World Cup finals since 1958 and means they will be in the same group as England, USA and Iran.
“It’s the greatest result in history for Welsh football,” said Bale. “It means everything. It’s what dreams are made of.”
A generation led by Bale has taken Wales to new heights, reaching the European Championship finals for the first time in 2016.
They enjoyed a giddy run to the semi-finals on debut and then qualified again for the delayed 2020 tournament last summer.
“It’s what we’ve been working all our careers for,” added the former Real Madrid, Tottenham Hotspur and Southampton player.
“To do this for the fans, the nation, ourselves and our families is an incredible achievement – and it will be something that we will be forever proud of.
“It means everything. It is the last piece of the jigsaw that we all wanted and we’re going to celebrate well tonight.”
Wales won thanks to a first-half own goal by Ukraine’s former West Ham forward Andriy Yarmolenko, who headed Bale’s free-kick past his goalkeeper.
The hosts were indebted to their own stopper Wayne Hennessey, meanwhile, for a string of vital stops that kept them in the lead and on course for the World Cup.
“The goalkeeper for Wales did amazing, he is definitely man of the match,” said Ukraine and Manchester City midfielder Oleksandr Zinchenko.
“I feel sorry for our fans, but I wish Wales all the best for the World Cup.”