Forsberg strike sends Sweden into last eight

Lynette Rowe
July 4, 2018

Sweden eked out a win over Switzerland in an all-European battle at the 2018 FIFA World Cup on Tuesday, advancing to the quarterfinals with a 1-0 scoreline.

In the first minute, after Sweden had lost possession, Xherdan Shaqiri drilled a speculative strike wide from outside the area.

Eventually Sweden capitalized when their brightest spark, Forsberg, struck thanks to the deflection off the unfortunate Akanji.

Sweden's midfielder Emil Forsberg (left) celebrates a goal next to Slovenian referee Damir Skomina during their 2018 World Cup round of 16 match against Switzerland at the Saint Petersburg Stadium in Saint Petersburg on July 3, 2018.

Switzerland pushed for an equalizer but Sweden closed ranks at the back, keeping the sixth-ranked side in the world at bay to record their third clean sheet of the tournament.

However, it was Lustig who picked up the first booking of the match, and it was to prove a costly one as it rules him out of Sweden's quarter-final clash.

Forsberg was allowed time to tee up his shot on the edge of the penalty area and, although goalkeeper Yann Sommer appeared to have it covered, Swiss defender Manuel Akanji stuck out a foot and deflected it into the corner of the net. They haven't scored in a knockout game in soccer's biggest tournament in 64 years, when they last reached in the quarterfinals at home in 1954.

More news: Neymar believes critics of his Brazil theatrics are trying to 'undermine' him

They broke through the Swiss cordon in extra time when the substitute Martin Olsson was released into space and brought down just outside the box.

The referee gave Lang a red card and at first awarded a penalty to the Swedes, but changed his mind after consulting the video assistant referee (VAR) and instead awarded a free kick.

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.

Sweden have now played 50 World Cup matches, and only Mexico have played more (57) without ever winning the competition. You can watch a Live Stream of the match via beIN SPORTS CONNECT. They were without both Fabian Schaer and captain Stephan Lichtsteiner at the back, prompting Johan Djourou and Lang to come in.

In team news, Sebastian Larsson will be unavailable through suspension.

Albin Ekdal managed to outdo his team-mate with an even worse miss as he blazed a chance over from close range just before half-time.

Other reports by LeisureTravelAid

Discuss This Article

FOLLOW OUR NEWSPAPER