There is more to come from Sweden, warns coach Andersson

Adjust Comment Print

Like Berg, Russia 2018 had not been kind to Emil Forsberg.

Sweden have reached the knockout stage in each of their last four World Cup appearances (in 1994, 2002, 2006 and 2018), athough they've only reached the quarter-finals once since 1958.

Shots were meanwhile blocked on the edge of the area as Switzerland couldn't quite carve out clear chances. "It brings tears to my eyes". No more cult of the individual - Zlatan Ibrahimovic ruled the team for more than a decade before retiring from worldwide play in 2016 - but instead an emphasis on the team.

Forsberg was quiet in the group stage but the attacking midfielder's skills and slick movement stood out against Switzerland in an otherwise scrappy game between two of Europe's less-decorated nations.

Nevertheless, just before the half-hour mark, Sweden nearly went in front through Berg but Switzerland stopper Yann Sommer made an excellent save to his right from a volley. The Swiss defender Manuel Akanji stuck out a foot but a deflection took the ball past the wrong-footed goalkeeper.

Sweden deserve credit and once again showed why they should not be underestimated, especially not by England, who they now face in the quarter final on Saturday. Limited but with a highly effective game plan, the Swedes should not be underestimated.

Both sides were guilty of squandering good openings - and Switzerland ended it with 10 men after Michael Lang was dismissed in injury time for a push on Martin Olsson, who was clean through on goal. The referee initially awarded a penalty kick but later gave a free kick after a video review.

Switzerland was fortunate to still be in the match at that point.

Switzerland, ranked No. 6 in the world, had more possession but failed to carve out any clear-cut chances. In fact, they could have been 2-0 down in the first ten minutes if Marcus Berg and Albin Ekdal had been more clinical. The whistle went, and they danced and sung in front of their light but loud support, ecstatic simply that they were World Cup quarter-finalists once more.

The Swiss shook off the cagey start to drastically improve their team play and positioning, but they had only themselves to blame for wayward crosses and shots as displayed by Xhaka and Shaqiri.

Is Donald Trump on a relentless quest to corner Iran?
Oil prices fell on Monday as supplies from Saudi Arabia and Russian Federation rose while economic growth stumbled in Asia amid an escalating trade dispute with the United States.

England, keen to end their dismal shoot-out record at major tournaments, saw Henderson's spot-kick saved but Mateus Uribe smashed the following kick on to the crossbar to hand them a lifeline.

Before this game, Switzerland coach Vladimir Petkovic dismissed suggestions that this is the weaker side of the draw.

"When they score a goal, it is always extremely hard to crack that tough nut".

Achilles, a white-furred Hermitage male cat reputed to have psychic powers, has predicted that Switzerland's team will win a match vs Sweden in the FIFA World Cup's Round of 16 in St. Petersburg on Tuesday.

The defensive duo, who are suspended after picking up two yellow cards each, are an integral part of the Swiss back line, and if the is to progress at the tournament it must first work out how to cope without the two.

"We're all very happy about the successes we have seen so far".

Lustig dragged a long-range attempt in the first half sideways and it went out for a throw-in.

Sweden is doing better at this World Cup than it ever did with Ibra.

In 39 years as a player and then a coach, Andersson hasn't worked outside Sweden, and many of his clubs were in the country's lower leagues, like Alets and Laholms.

Comments