World Cup match report Serbia v Switzerland 22 June 2018

by Steven Clarke June 23, 2018, 1:32
World Cup match report Serbia v Switzerland 22 June 2018

Shaqiri then struck in the 90th minute to secure victory for the Swiss, who are second in Group E behind Brazil on four points with one game remaining. - Branislav Ivanovic broke Dejan Stankovic's record for appearances for Serbia in its opening match against Costa Rica - he now has 104 caps.

Both Granit Xhaka and Xherdan Shaqiri celebrated their goals for Switzerland against Serbia on Friday by making a nationalist symbol of Albania in a gesture likely to inflame tensions among Serb nationalists and ethnic Albanians.

And where Mladen Krstajic's defence lack in pace and mobility, it more than make up for in experience, but that may have cost the nation dearly as the tiring legs of those at the back were exposed and ripped open towards the end of the match, as Shaqiri raced through on goal and stole a late victor. "They have qualities throughout the squad, excellent individuals".

"I hope that people will take notice of us and take us seriously".

Serbia boast a host of current and former Premier League talent, including Matic, Kolarov and Newcastle forward Aleksandar Mitrovic.

Swiss coach Vladimir Petkovic has vowed to keep up his side's high-tempo, physical approach that earned them a draw with Brazil.

And Serbia head coach Mladen Krstajic is braced for a hard encounter, telling Swiss newspaper Blick: "They are very strong!"

It was an assignment that was every bit as tough as Serbia expected. After nearly putting his side ahead with a curling strike that clipped the woodwork, the Swiss livewire scored the goal his performance deserved in the final minute of normal time.

"I guarantee you my players will take responsibility, be aggressive and on top of the other team", Krstajic said Thursday.

"We know everything about Switzerland", stated their head coach Mladen Krstajic after their first match, which was also his first competitive game in charge of the side.

Not between Swiss and Serbian fans, but between Albanian and Serbian supporters.

Stretching the Serbians inadvertently led to the leveler, as a cross-field ball found Xherdan Shaqiri but, after seeing his shot blocked away, it fell to Granit Xhaka, who rifled the ball beyond Vladimir Stojković in the 52nd minute.

Neither coach would be drawn on the issue Thursday, with Krstajic saying he is "not interested in politics".

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