This Wales fan scored a ticket to the Slovakia game - then slept through history

In the space of a few minutes, Gareth Tansey had his photograph taken with a Welsh sporting legend and then was present for one of the great moments in his country’s footballing history as Gareth Bale scored their first ever European Championship goal.

Unfortunately, he was asleep through the whole thing.

(Huw Tomos-Griffiths.)

Tansey has become a social media sensation since being unknowingly photographed with Welsh rugby veteran Shane Williams in the Nouveau Stade de Bordeaux on Saturday.

Tansey got into the party spirit with thousands of other Welsh fans ahead of the match – but admits he may have “over-indulged” on strong French lager and red wine.

By the time he took to the stands, the 34-year-old was out for the count – and could not even be roused by the presence of former Ospreys star Williams – who lifted up the sozzled supporter’s head while belting out the Welsh national anthem with thousands of others.

Tansey said: “I was dead to the world. I had no idea that I’d had my photo taken with one of Wales’s greatest ever sportsmen.

“I was totally out of it. I didn’t even hear the national anthem being sung or the roar when Gareth Bale scored our first goal.”

Tansey, from Milford Haven, headed out to France with friend Stephen Warr, 35, without a ticket but the pair aimed to soak up the atmosphere as Wales made their first appearance in a major tournament since 1958.

However, they managed to score a late winner after finding two tickets on sale half an hour before kick-off and forked out around £80 each.

(Martin Rickett/PA)

“We’d been out the night before drinking this blonde French lager, I think it was about 7.8%,” he said.

“Then we were back on the drinks on Saturday. When we managed to get a ticket we had some wine to celebrate.”

But by the time he took his seat for the game, it all proved a bit too much.

He joked: “I think it was the excitement got to me.”

(Mike Egerton/PA)

Thankfully, he didn’t miss the entire match and at least caught Hal Robson Kanu’s 81st-minute goal – which gave Wales a 2-1 win.

However, it was not until later that evening that the Sunderland fan discovered he had his photo taken with Wales’s record try-scorer Williams and it had been shared thousands of times on Twitter.

He said: “I wasn’t happy at first. My auntie and uncle in Malaysia got in touch and said they’d even seen it.

“I’ve calmed down a bit since and can see the comedy value in it – though I’m still gutted that I missed such a historic occasion.”

(Mike Egerton/PA)

Tansey has now launched a frantic bid to get a ticket for Wales’s crunch tie against rivals England in Lens on Thursday.

“This time I won’t get too carried away with the celebrations. I’ll be completely off the alcohol and be there full body, mind and spirit!”


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