Sweden beat Switzerland 1-0 to reach World Cup quarter-finals

by Steven Clarke July 4, 2018, 0:31
Sweden beat Switzerland 1-0 to reach World Cup quarter-finals

Sweden's Emil Forsberg (centre) celebrates with teammates after his match-winning goal against Switzerland in the 66th minute.

Sweden secured their place in the quarter-finals of the 2018 FIFA World Cup with a 1-0 win over Switzerland on Tuesday.

But Forsberg arrived in Russian Federation shouldering the creative burden left by Ibrahimovic following his retirement two years ago, and the attacking midfielder's skills and slick movement stood out at St. Petersburg Stadium. After getting past Granit Xhaka, Forsberg didn't get much power behind his shot from the edge of the area and it was likely heading straight for Switzerland goalkeeper Yann Sommer.

Forsberg also produced a well-timed clearance in his own penalty area to preserve the advantage against a Switzerland side who finished with 10 men, defender Michael Lang seeing red after clipping the heels of Martin Olsson just outside the penalty area when the substitute was clean through on goal.

The referee first awarded a penalty but then changed his mind after consulting the video assistant referee to award a free kick, but Sommer saved Ola Toivonen's effort. The Swiss team dominated possession, had more shots (18 to 12), but just couldn't break through a stingy Swedish defense, as the yellow and blue move on to face either England or Colombia on Saturday.

The third match saw them hammering Mexico 3-0 to help them finish top of Group F. Sweden will hoping to qualify for the quarterfinals for the first time since 1994.

Unfortunately for Switzerland fans, Petkovic's team talk inspiration failed to materialise as his side entered the second half without the same venom or verve they had demonstrated in their previous second-half appearances. It wasn't particularly pretty, but they created the better chances throughout the match, with number 9 Marcus Berg once again profligate in front of goal.

During the opening stages of the game, both Xherdan Shaqiri and Steven Zuber failed to threaten with long-range strikes and Sweden nearly capitalised when Marcus Berg was played through on goal, only for the forward to slice a half-volley well wide of the target.

In team news, Sebastian Larsson will be unavailable through suspension. You can watch a Live Stream of the match via beIN SPORTS CONNECT.

It didn't matter, though.

And from the corner Sweden missed the game's best chance so far, Lustig crossing to the far post where the unmarked Albin Ekdal sent a first-time volley horribly high from only six yards out.

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