Sweden battles past Switzerland 1-0 to reach World Cup quarter-finals

Will it be Sweden or Switzerland who progress to the last eight of the World Cup

Although they have picked up some impressive results to reach the last eight, they have shown little for England or Colombia to fear and look one of the weakest teams left in the competition.

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.

But it was not just the Swedes who were guilty of profligacy in front of goal.

Forsberg had to clear a header from his goal line after Breel Embolo met a corner in the 79th minute and then, ten minutes later, Switzerland moved upfield after Toivonen's error and another header, this time from Haris Seferovic, brought a low save from Robin Olsen.

Albin Ekdal also drilled a shot over for Sweden as they began to get themselves on top but the game quickly developed into a contest of few clear-cut opportunities.

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

With six minutes remaining before the interval, Blerim Dzemaili was teed up for Switzerland's best opportunity of the half but the Bolgona playmaker sent his first-time effort from a central position over the bar.

Switzerland are unbeaten in Russian Federation following draws against Brazil and Costa Rica and a dramatic win over Serbia meaning the world's 6th ranked side have only been defeated in one of their last 25 games (W17, D7). He was probably their best player in Russian Federation, alongside Xherdan Shaqiri, while Granit Xhaka helped them dictate the tempo of at least part of every game.

They did put three past an already qualified Mexico in their final group game - albeit with one penalty and one own goal - but also required a spot-kick to see off South Korea in their World Cup opener.

The match went to penalties with Colombia taking the lead on the fourth stage after a miss by Jordan Henderson, however, Mateus Uribe hit the post to keep England alive. "We should have done things better, but we were not good enough to win this match".

And on Tuesday, Sweden proved that once again that dogged defending and huge collective effort can be very effective, even in the knockout stages of the World Cup.

"It feels quite extraordinary and quite odd", Sweden coach Janne Andersson said.

"We know that we're a good team, we've earned our successes".

"We've worked this way throughout, we're continuing the same way, and what other teams and countries think about that is not terribly interesting".

Switzerland will be going into the clash without centre-back Fabian Schar and right-back Stephan Lichtsteiner, who are both facing one-game bans. It's all about the process right now and it's full steam ahead for us.

"We have a gameplan and they do not stray from it one millimeter", said Andersson of his team, aside making up for its lack of superstars - notably Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who retired from worldwide football after Euro 2016 - with unity and spirit.



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