A Robert Earnshaw double completed three minutes from time allowed Wales to dent the confidence of Trinidad & Tobago, the side that will be England's second Group B opponents at the World Cup.
Leo Beenhakker, the coach of the Soca Warriors who had the lion's share of the possession, remained upbeat despite the reverse. "We are at a certain stage of our planning and are two weeks away from our objective," he said. "That has to be playing Sweden in our first match. I cannot think of England now although it is all I hear about, England, England, all the time. England comes later, and I know we will be better by then."
Trinidad & Tobago opened the scoring after 32 minutes, capitalising on sloppy Welsh defending after James Collins gave away a needless free-kick. When Chris Birchall's cross drifted into the six-yard box, David Partridge's poor challenge allowed Stern John to clip home.
Six minutes later Wales were level. Joe Ledley's long ball from the left found Collins still in the penalty area after a failed free-kick to head down for Earnshaw to flick the ball over Jack.
Russell Latapy saw a cleverly flighted 20-yard shot just clear the far post after the break before Collin Samuel's shot was blocked by Collins and the rebound saved at point-blank range by Glyn Garner. Wales were under the cosh and John Toshack responded by bringing on the Yeovil teenager Arron Davies for his full debut. Gareth Bale also came off the bench to become Wales' youngest-ever full international at 16 years and 315 days.
The changes paid off as Earnshaw combined with Bale on the left and, when the youngster's near-post ball came in, Earnshaw forced in the winner.
Toshack reflected on a pleasing evening with a unique progress report. " We have now drawn with Paraguay, beaten Trinidad and Tobago and only lost 1-0 to England in recent results," he said. "So I suppose I can say we have qualified from the group for the next stage of the World Cup finals. We can certainly dream."
On Wales' youngsters, Toshack added: "We had Bale, 16, Ledley, 19 and Lewin Nyatanga, 17 playing down the left. They did not look out of place and have been a real bonus."Reuse content