Kozak bemoans Wales luck as Slovakia fall to defeat

Getty Images
The 62-year-old believes a draw would have been a fairer result after seeing his side have a goal-bound shot cleared off the line, while another effort struck the post

Slovakia boss Jan Kozak bemoaned a lack of luck after seeing his side slip to a 2-1 defeat in their Euro 2016 opener against Wales on Saturday.

Ondrej Duda got Slovakia back on level terms after Gareth Bale scored an early free-kick, but Hal Robson-Kanu squeezed in a late winner to snatch the points for Wales.

Slovakia earlier had a goal-bound effort cleared off the line by Marek Hamsik, before Adam Nemec struck the post.

And afterwards Kozak lamented Slovakia's misfortune in front of goal.

"We had a clear-cut chance but Hamsik didn't score and we conceded from a free-kick," he said.

"It affected the way the game developed, we weren't very sure on the ball, we lost possession quite easily.

"I think after half-time we did our best to succeed, we equalised and towards the end both Wales and us tried to get the win in an open game.

"I don't think they were better, they had more luck, a draw would have been fairer."

Kozak added that he was unsure whether goalkeeper Matus Kozacik should have done better for Bale's free-kick after the goalkeeper seemed to take a step the wrong way as the Real Madrid star struck the set piece.

"It's difficult to see from the bench whether the keeper could have saved Bale's goal," Kozak said. 

"It was a typical Bale shot from a free-kick. He's a top player and we have to respect it. 

"Of course any defeat is unpleasant, especially at a European Championship.

"I knew that whoever scored the first goal would have a great advantage because Wales have a well-organised defence and up front they have a very dangerous man who can make a difference.

"When I brought on Duda and [Adam] Nemec it was a bit of a risk, but you have to deal with these scenarios. We could have prevented the second goal, but that's football."

Slovakia's next Euro 2016 match sees Kozak's charges take on Russia in Lille on Wednesday.