Loren Dykes, here presented with her 100th cap by Danny Gabbidon, will assist in next week's training camp following her retirement. Pic: FAW.

Jayne Ludlow Insists The Vanishing Goals Will Return For Wales As Loren Dykes Hits Century Mark

Jayne Ludlow insists she’s not worried by a Wales team that have forgotten how to score goals.

On a night when Loren Dykes put two zeros next to her name – becoming only the second Welsh woman after Jess Fishlock to win 100 caps – Wales did the same by recording a 0-0 draw at home to the Czech Republic on Thursday.

It may only have been a friendly at Rodney Parade, but as Wales head towards more European Championship qualifiers later this year they need to rectify a lack of effective firepower.

Ludlow’s side have now failed to score in their last seven matches – that’s over 10 hours of football, a run stretching back to last June.

“I am not concerned about the lack of goals – concern doesn’t come into it,” said Ludlow.

“I would be concerned if we weren’t creating chances. I do hope it will change before August and I am sure that it will.”

Wales open their Euro 2021 qualifying campaign away to the Faroe Islands on August 29. Their first home qualifier is against Northern Ireland five days later on September 3.

And Ludlow believes her team can work through their difficulties in time for those crucial matches ahead. Having missed out on World Cup qualification, their next friendly is at home to New Zealand on June 4.

“We created some really good goal-scoring opportunities and defended really well,” she added.

“We were really pleased with the first 45 minutes performance. But we lost our way for a 20-minute spell in the second half and there are definitely areas we can tighten up on. They highlighted some weaknesses we will have to change.

“But there were some really good performances from individuals in the opening half. We had a great attendance, and when you reflect on where we were before the last campaign, it’s amazing.

“People are coming out and supporting us, and for us and it’s about inspiring the next generation. New Zealand will be a different type of test but one we’re looking forward to.”

Full-back Dykes – a key member of a defence that kept seven clean-sheets in eight games during the course of the last qualifying campaign – was made captain for the night as she joined Fishlock in reaching the mark of 100 caps.

“Loren did everything she needed to do,” Ludlow said. “I am really pleased for her with her performance.”

The Bristol City defender led out the side, while her 100th cap was presented to her by former Wales international Danny Gabbidon before kick-off.

Ludlow added: “Any player that amasses that number of caps is obviously somebody that we’re really proud of and somebody that we really value.”

Dykes made her senior international debut for Wales against the Netherlands as a teenager back in August 2007 and has been an integral part of the squad since that first appearance.


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