'It is a cruel game' - Coleman warns Wales stars

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AFP
The Dragons cannot afford to become complacent or distracted as they prepare to play in the last 16 of Euro 2016, their coach underlined

Chris Coleman has urged Wales not to get carried away by their impressive form at Euro 2016 – or they will swiftly find themselves flying home from France.

The famous 3-0 win over Russia on Monday ensured Wales finished with six points from their three Group B matches and beat England to top spot.

As a result, Coleman's men will play a third-place finisher - potentially Northern Ireland or Turkey - in the last 16.

But Coleman has told his Wales players they cannot afford to become overconfident, especially in the knockout stages where there is no margin for error.

"It is a cruel game," said the manager. "Once you start thinking you are untouchable, you are on dangerous ground. 

"Russia was brilliant, we will always remember it. It will go down in history. But one minute you are right there and everything is great, the next you take your eye off the ball and everything has fallen down.

"Now it is this next game. It doesn't matter who it is. There is no talk in my camp about who could be next after the last 16. There is no way I would allow that and there is not a team in this tournament who can think like that - not even Germany or Spain.

"We have to have feet firmly on the ground here. Everyone is talking about this possibility or that possibility.

"I know how dangerous football is. You have never arrived no matter how many games you have played. It's all on the day now, there is no afters, no second bites, you have to bring it on the day.

"We will do what we did before Russia, realise how good we are, accept that responsibility and take it on the pitch."

Wales' last-16 match will take place at Parc des Princes on Saturday.

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