Hermitage cat predicts Switzerland will defeat Sweden at World Cup

Hermitage cat predicts Switzerland will defeat Sweden at World Cup

Hermitage cat predicts Switzerland will defeat Sweden at World Cup

Sixth-ranked Switzerland take on high-flying Sweden in a Round of 16 match of Fifa World Cup 2018 at St. Petersburg on Tuesday, July 3.

The Swiss were reduced to 10 men when Michael Lang took down Martin Olsson just outside the box with Swansea City man bearing down on goal to compound their misery.

Referee Damir Skomina's decision to award the late penalty against Lang looked correct at the time, but a review showed Olsson was just outside the box when he was tripped.

Switzerland are hoping to reach the quarterfinals for the first time since 1954 while Sweden last appeared in the last eight in 1994, when they finished third.

He scored what turned out to be the match-winner, but Forsberg was crucial to the way Sweden played against a Switzerland side who dominated the majority of the possession.

This Switzerland team was made up largely of the same players who lost in the round of 16 to Argentina at the 2014 World Cup, and to Poland in the same stage at the 2016 European Championship.

In a first half of few clear-cut chances, Sweden had the lion's share and went close in the 27th minute when Marcus Berg's strike drew a fine save from Yann Sommer at full-stretch. They were slightly less impressive in a 2-2 draw with Costa Rica in their last match, their defense looking unusually vulnerable against the Central American outfit.

And while the match in St Petersburg could not be said to lack passion or goalmouth incidents, the quality of finishing gave the impression that neither side was capable of taking the glorious opportunity in front of them.

Berg, for example, had a good chance early on only for his shot to strike Swiss defender Manuel Akanji and then Albin Ekdal drove the follow up widely over. The Swedish striker should have done so much better with that opportunity.

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England banished their penalty shoot-out demons as they beat Colombia to set up a quarter-final clash with Sweden on another dramatic day at the FIFA World Cup in Russian Federation.

"Put your head down, work hard, focus, it doesn't always go your way, things will go wrong, but you need to stand with both feet on the ground knowing it is perfectly possible to succeed", said Forsberg of his willingness to fit into the team ethic.

Xherdan Shaqiri looked to pull the strings for Switzerland and he imposed himself on the game early by delivering unsafe balls for Blerim Dzemaili and Josip Drmic, but neither could make the majority.

A speculative effort followed from midfield enforcer Granit Xhaka, while Blerim Dzemaili fired over on 38 minutes after neat link-up play with Zuber.

With 10 minutes to go, Embolo had a header scrambled away from nearly on the line by Forsberg who, along with Lustig, was substituted in a double change as time ticked away, Emil Krafth and Martin Olsson coming on. With 12 minutes remaining, Francois Moubandje's header was blocked on the line by Forsberg and hacked clear by Andreas Granqvist, his captain.

Switzerland coach Vladimir Petkovic: "We're sorely disappointed, the whole team is".

"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".

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

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