MX23RW : Tuesday, March 26 17:29:47

Live Commentary: Brazil 1-1 Switzerland - as it happened

Relive Sports Mole's live commentary of the 2018 World Cup clash between Brazil and Switzerland, which finished 1-1.
Live Commentary: Brazil 1-1 Switzerland - as it happened
© Reuters

Steven Zuber cancelled out a strike from Philippe Coutinho as Switzerland came from behind to draw 1-1 with Brazil in Sunday night's Group E clash at the 2018 World Cup.

Coutinho's curling effort had seen tournament favourites Brazil take a 20th-minute lead, but an impressive Switzerland levelled early in the second period, and that was where the scoring ended in Rostov.

Read how it all unfolded in Sports Mole's minute-by-minute live commentary of the action below.

6.01pmEvening all! Sports Mole's live 2018 World Cup coverage continues from the Rostov Arena as Brazil take on Switzerland. Costa Rica and Serbia kicked off Group E earlier this afternoon, and it was Serbia who recorded a 1-0 win to take an early lead in the section. Now tournament favourites Brazil will open their campaign. Stay tuned for what should be a cracking game of football!

6.04pmTonight will be the ninth international meeting between these two teams, and Brazil lead the head-to-head three wins to two. It is actually their first competitive clash since the 1950 World Cup, but they did lock horns in a friendly back in 2013, with Switzerland recording a 1-0 win on that occasion.

6.07pmRight, without further ado, let me bring you up-to-speed with the all-important team news from the Rostov Arena. Brazil are Brazil, but there are also plenty of familiar faces in the Switzerland XI...


BRAZIL: Alisson; Danilo, Thiago, Miranda, Marcelo; Coutinho, Casemiro, Paulinho; Neymar, Jesus, Willian

SWITZERLAND: Sommer; Lichtsteiner, Schar, Akanji, Rodriguez; Shaqiri, Behrami, Xhaka, Zuber; Dzemaili; Seferovic

6.13pmWillian and Philippe Coutinho both start for Brazil tonight, with head coach Tite selecting a very attacking XI in Rostov. Gabriel Jesus leads the line with support from Neymar - meaning that Roberto Firmino is only on the bench. Further back, Paulinho and Casemiro will hold the midfield, while Danilo starts at right-back as he benefits from Dani Alves' injury before the tournament.

Brazil and Paris Saint-Germain forward Neymar in action during the World Cup warm-up match against Croatia at Anfield on June 3, 2018© Reuters

6.16pmAs for Switzerland, Stephan Lichtsteiner, Xherdan Shaqiri and Granit Xhaka all start, while Haris Seferovic will lead the line - meaning that Breel Embolo starts on the bench. AC Milan defender Ricardo Rodriguez features at left-back, while there is plenty of experience in midfield as Xhaka is joined by Valon Behrami and Blerim Dzemaili, who have almost 150 Swiss caps between them.

6.19pmSo there we have it. The two teams are in, and we are now just about 40 minutes from kickoff in this match. I shall speak about Switzerland a little bit later, but let's start with the tournament favourites Brazil. The Selecao have not landed the World Cup trophy since 2002, but they are the favourites - with the bookmakers at least - to claim the silverware next month.


6.25pmBrazil reached the semi-finals of the 2014 competition on home soil before suffering that incredible 7-1 defeat to the eventual winners Germany. Four years have passed since then, and this team looks ready to finally move past that last-four clash. It is not too difficult to see why Brazil are the favourites when considering their incredible talent, and indeed their recent form.

6.28pmIndeed, since Tite took charge of the Brazil in June 2016, the South American nation have won 17 of their 21 matches - conceding just five times and scoring 47 goals in the process. They have not actually shipped a single goal in 2018 - beating Russia, Germany, Croatia and Austria in friendlies.

6.32pmBrazil dispatched a strong Croatia team in one of their two pre-tournament friendlies, before beating an improving Austria 3-0 last weekend. The South American nation will always score goals due to their incredible talent in the final third of the field, but they have been defensively excellent.


6.38pmIn terms of this tournament, Brazil will open their Group E campaign tonight before taking on Costa Rica in their second group match on June 22. Tite's side then finish against Serbia on June 27, and it would be an incredible shock if the Brazilians did not win this particular section.

6.42pmThere had been some concern that Neymar would miss the World Cup when he picked up a foot injury playing for Paris Saint-Germain earlier this year, but the attacker is fit and present. He scored his 55th international goal against Austria last weekend, and will be in the mood to harm Switzerland tonight. You just get the feeling that Neymar could absolutely light up this tournament.

6.45pmSpeaking of Switzerland, Vladimir Petkovic's team will seemingly battle Serbia for second spot in this group. It is going to be tough for them to take something from tonight's match, but they face Serbia in their next game on June 22, before finishing against Costa Rica. There is absolutely no question that the Swiss are good enough to progress into the round of 16.


6.52pmIndeed, Switzerland have reached the last-16 stage of a World Cup in each of their last four tournaments - including in Brazil four years ago. Like Brazil, they will bring good form into the competition having drawn with Spain and beaten Japan in their two pre-tournament friendlies.

6.55pmSwitzerland have actually only lost one match since Euro 2016, and that was away to Portugal during qualification for this World Cup. Indeed, they won nine of their 10 qualification matches to finish second behind Portugal on goal difference, and were impressive in their draw with Spain earlier this month. Right, the time for talking is almost over. Both sets of players are in the tunnel!

6.58pmIt must be said that there is a wonderful atmosphere inside the stadium, and the Brazilian supporters are fairly vocal to say the absolute least. The national anthems have taken place; kickoff is now just moments away. Let's hope for an open and entertaining game of football from Rostov!

0 minKICKOFF! Brazil kick things off here...

2 min... you do get the feeling that Switzerland will need to start well tonight if they are to pick up a positive result. The team in red have had decent possession inside the first two minutes here.

4 minCHANCE! Big chance for Switzerland as Shaqiri finds space in a wide position before picking out Dzemaili with a cross, but the midfielder lifts the ball over the crossbar!

6 minNot too much from the Brazilians going forward in the first six minutes, with Switzerland certainly enjoying more of the football. Coutinho is very deep as he comes to collect the ball off his defence, and it will be very interesting to see his position as the match develops in Rostov.

7 minWillian flashes a cross past everyone inside the Switzerland box.

9 minSeferovic looks to release Zuber with a pass as Switzerland break once again, but Thiago Silva is across to deal with the danger. Paulinho then finds himself down the other end of the field, although the Barcelona midfielder over-runs the ball, which allows Switzerland to resume with a goal kick.

11 minPaulinho has been heavily involved for Brazil thus far, but we have not seen too much from Gabriel Jesus. That is credit to Switzerland though, with the team in red very bright early on here.

12 minCHANCE! Huge chance for Brazil as Paulinho finds himself unmarked inside the Switzerland box, but the midfielder just pulls the ball wide of the post. Excellent from Neymar!

14 minThere is no question that Brazil are starting to find their feet here as they pass and probe.

15 minBrazil have a free kick in a dangerous area as Neymar is chopped to the ground...

16 min... Neymar smashes the ball straight into the Switzerland wall.

18 minAgain it is wonderful from Brazil as Coutinho combines with Neymar before finding Jesus, who delivers low into the Switzerland box, but Sommer is on hand to collect. Dream football there.

20 minGOAL! Brazil 1-0 Switzerland (Coutinho)

21 minOh my goodness. That is just stunning. Coutinho finds some space outside the Switzerland box before curling an absolute dream of an effort into the top corner of the net. Just wonderful!

23 minSwitzerland are just trying to take the pressure off with a period of possession, but they now look nervous against a Brazilian team that are seemingly not here to play games this summer.

25 minPass, pass, pass from Switzerland; the team in red are not really going anywhere with it, though. Brazil do not exactly need a second invitation to attack, and they are away on the break again.

26 minStoppage in play here as Schar and Casemiro clash heads inside the Brazil box.

27 minSchar and Casemiro are both on their feet, and both will continue.

30 minLittle over 15 minutes of the first period remaining, and Brazil still lead 1-0 courtesy of that wonderful effort from Coutinho. In fairness to Switzerland, they are having a lot of the ball here.

31 minBOOKING! Lichtsteiner (Switzerland) is booked for a foul on Neymar.

32 minJust a reminder that the first match in this particular group saw Serbia beat Costa Rica 1-0 earlier this afternoon. Right, Neymar is standing over a free kick in a dangerous position here...

33 min... Seferovic heads Marcelo's delivery over his own crossbar for a corner kick.

35 minHalf-chance for Jesus as the Manchester City forward meets a corner from Neymar, but his header is away from goal. Switzerland then break down the other end before being crowded out.

37 minGood possession for Switzerland, but they are not really creating anything here.

39 minLittle over five minutes of the first period remaining, and Brazil are now having most of the possession as they search for a second goal. It has been a half lacking clear opportunities.

41 minThiago Silva takes a strike from Zuber in the face, and the centre-back needs a moment to recover before returning to his feet. Zuber came close to taking the Brazilian's head off with that effort.

43 minGabriel Jesus breaks into the Switzerland box, but Akanji does really well to make the challenge. Switzerland have defended well for long ranges, and only trail to a stunning Coutinho effort.

45 minBrazil are fairly deep at the moment, and seem happy enough to allow Switzerland possession of the the football as we approach the final stages of a first half which has absolutely flown by here.

45+1 minWe are into the first of two additional minutes at the end of the first period.

45+2 minCLOSE! Thiago Silva heads a Neymar corner just over the Switzerland crossbar! It was a terrific effort from the centre-back, and Switzerland are a touch fortunate there.

45+3 minHALF-TIME: Brazil 1-0 Switzerland

7.47pmSo there we have it. The referee brings the first period to a close with Brazil leading Switzerland 1-0 courtesy of a wonderful effort from Coutinho in the 20th minute. Switzerland responded well, however, and have matched the Selecao for long stages of the first period. All to play for here!

7.52pmSTATISTICS! The two teams actually shared the possession in the first period, but Brazil had five attempts to Switzerland's two. The game's only attempt on target was Coutinho's strike, however, and that is an indication of how the match developed after the deadlock was broken. Just the one yellow card to report in Rostov, and that came for Switzerland captain Lichtsteiner in the 31st minute.

7.57pmBENCH WATCH! Brazil have an embarrassment of riches on their bench tonight, with Taison, Douglas Costa, Roberto Firmino and Fernandinho among those that will hope to play a part. Soon-to-be Manchester United midfielder Fred, however, is still injured. As for Switzerland, head coach Petkovic has the likes of Breel Embolo, Gelson Fernandes and Michael Lang in reserve tonight.

46 minRESTART! Switzerland resume the action here...

47 min... no changes from either side at the break, which is not too much of a surprise. However, I suspect that both managers will have alterations in mind as the second period develops here.

47 minDzemaili curls one harmlessly wide of the Brazil post from distance.

47 minBOOKING! Casemiro (Brazil) is booked for a foul on Dzemaili.

49 minPaulinho looks to find Gabriel Jesus with a clever pass just outside the Switzerland box, but Sommer is on hand to claim. The move had started with Neymar combining with Coutinho out wide.

50 minGOAL! Brazil 1-1 Switzerland (Zuber)

51 minOh my goodness! Switzerland are on terms here as Zuber heads a corner into the back of the Brazilian net from close range. The number 14 was given far too much space inside the box!

52 minWe now have a serious game on our hands as Switzerland look to progress forward once again. Now we will find out what this Brazil team is made of; can they come through this tough test?

54 minPossession football from Brazil, but Switzerland are nice and tight at the back here.

55 minBehrami does not look happy for Switzerland as he goes down with an apparent muscular problem.

57 minBehrami is back on his feet, and will continue for the moment. Brazil are seeing more of the ball at the moment as Switzerland drop a little deep. Big 30 minutes of football coming up here.

58 minCoutinho has two efforts blocked before Neymar's strike is deflected into the side-netting as Brazil start to move through the gears here. Neymar moves gingerly away from the challenge.

60 minSwitzerland are struggling to get out of their own half at the moment as Brazil move through the gears. The team in red just need to settle down; there is still a lot of football to be played here.

60 minBRAZIL SUB! Fernandinho replaces Casemiro for Brazil.

62 minStill a lot of football to be played before the night is out, and you do get the feeling that we have not seen the last of the goals. Brazil are having almost all of the football at the moment here.

64 minSwitzerland are invited forward following some loose work from Gabriel Jesus, but they cannot make the most of it. You suspect that we could be seeing Douglas Costa shortly here.

65 minBOOKING! Schar (Switzerland) is booked for a foul on Neymar.

66 minNeymar scuffs a low free kick into the Switzerland box, and the danger is cleared. Fernandinho then has one deflected wide of the post as the pressure continues from the team in yellow.

67 minBRAZIL SUB! Augusto replaces Paulinho for Brazil here.

68 minBOOKING! Behrami (Switzerland) is booked for a foul on Neymar.

70 minCHANCE! Coutinho slices one wide of the post following a wonderful pass from Neymar, which had found the Barcelona midfielder in space. Should have done better!

71 minSWITZERLAND SUB! Behrami is replaced by Zakaria.

73 minStill a good 20 minutes of football to be played in this game, and you do get the feeling that we have not seen the last of the goals. Brazil are the team on the front foot, but Switzerland have just tested Alisson - Dzemaili firing into the arms of the goalkeeper from outside the box.

74 minGabriel Jesus has just gone down inside the Switzerland box, and VAR are involved.

75 minNo penalty for Brazil, and Gabriel Jesus could well be replaced by Firmino shortly here.

77 minSwitzerland have shown tonight that they will be a match for anyone at the World Cup.

78 minFernandinho hammers one over the crossbar from outside the Switzerland box.

79 minSommer is down to keep out a long-range strike from Neymar.

79 minBRAZIL SUB! Firmino replaces Gabriel Jesus for Brazil.

80 minSWITZERLAND SUB! Embolo replaces Seferovic for Switzerland.

81 minLichtsteiner is down holding his face following a clash with Miranda.

82 minFirmino flashes one over the Switzerland crossbar from a wide angle.

84 minLittle over five minutes of the second period remaining, and Switzerland seemingly fancy their chances of claiming all three points here as they continue to commit players forward.

86 minSuper defending from Miranda to ease Embolo off the ball, and Brazil are away down the other end. Firmino almost collects a pass from Neymar inside the box, but Akanji clears his lines.

87 minSWITZERLAND SUB! Lang replaces Lichtsteiner for Switzerland.

88 minCHANCE! Neymar heads a Willian cross straight into Sommer's arms!

90 minSAVE! Sommer does well to keep out a flicked header from Firmino!

90+1 minWe are into the first of five additional minutes!

90+1 minCHANCE! Miranda's volley just misses the Switzerland post!

90+3 minThe ball runs away from Marcelo in a wide position as Switzerland move closer to securing a point.

90+5 minSwitzerland have the ball inside the Brazilian half of the field, and there is not much longer to play in this match. It would be the cruelest of conclusions if either team scored at this stage.

90+5 minNeymar is standing over a free kick in a dangerous area having been brought down...

90+6 min... Neymar clips a free kick into the Switzerland box, and the team in red survive following a period of panic inside their own box. Schar did well to block a strike from Firmino in there.

90+7 minFULL-TIME: Brazil 1-1 Switzerland

8.57pmSo there we have it. The referee brings the second period to a close with Switzerland holding Brazil in Group E. Coutinho's wonderful effort had sent the Brazilians ahead, but Zuber levelled for Switzerland early in the second period, and that was how it finished in Rostov. Thanks for joining Sports Mole for our live World Cup coverage once again. See you tomorrow!

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