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Live Commentary: Sweden 1-0 Switzerland - as it happened

Relive Sports Mole's live coverage as Sweden see off Switzerland by a 1-0 scoreline in Tuesday's World Cup last-16 clash in Saint Petersburg.
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A second-half goal from Emil Forsberg has earned Sweden a 1-0 victory over Switzerland in Tuesday's World Cup last-16 clash in St Petersburg.

After the opening hour of the contest produced few clear-cut chances, Forsberg found the top corner of the net after his strike from the edge of the area took a huge deflection off Manuel Akanji.

Switzerland also had Michael Lang dismissed in the closing stages but Sweden were deserving winners as they secured a spot in the quarter-finals of the competition for just the second time since 1958.

Find out how all of the action unfolded in Russia courtesy of Sports Mole's minute-by-minute updates below.


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Hello and welcome to Sports Mole's live coverage of the World Cup last-16 encounter between Sweden and Switzerland. Six nations have already booked their place in the quarter-finals, but which of these teams will keep their hopes of glory alive?

Before we move onto the facts and figures, let's bring you the all-important team news, starting with Sweden...

SWEDEN XI: Olsen; Lustig, Lindelof, Granqvist, Augustinsson; Claesson, Svensson, Ekdal, Forsberg; Berg, Toivonen

SWITZERLAND XI: Sommer; Lang, Djourou, Akanji, Rodriguez; Behrami, Xhaka; Shaqiri, Dzemaili, Zuber; Drmic

Sweden have made just the one change to the team which began their final group fixture with Mexico. It is an enforced one with Sebastian Larsson having to serve a suspension. Gustav Svensson of Seattle Sounders is the man brought into the team.

There had been the possibility of Andreas Granqvist missing the fixture due to the birth of his child but the skipper remains in the starting lineup alongside Victor Lindelof.

The alteration made by Janne Andersson is just his second of the tournament. Nine of the 11 who start this afternoon have began all three group games, with only Lindelof on two starts due to feeling ill ahead of the opener against South Korea.

Andersson will be looking to the likes of Emil Forsberg, Marcus Berg and Ola Toivonen to score today but the trio have just one goal between them. Two of Sweden's five goals in this tournament have come from the penalty spot.

As for Switzerland, Vladimir Petkovic opts to make a total of four changes. Two of the usual back four - Stephan Lichtsteiner and Fabian Schar - are serving one-man suspensions so Michael Lang and Johan Djourou come into the backline.

Further forward, Steven Zuber has been brought back into the team in place of Breel Embolo, while Josip Drmic has replaced Mario Gavranovic as the lone frontman.

The remainder of the side is as you would expect with Valon Behrami and Granit Xhaka featuring in central midfield and Xherdan Shaqiri being selected on the flank. All three will likely have to play a key part today.

The winner of this tie will progress through to a last-eight showdown with either Colombia or England. Click here to read our preview of the clash in Moscow.

Sweden qualified for this round of the tournament with wins over South Korea and Mexico. The last-gasp defeat to Germany midway through the group stages had the potential to knock their belief but the Scandinavian nation deserve so much credit for responding with a 3-0 victory over Mexico.

It means that Sweden have another chance to progress through to the quarter-finals for just the second time since 1958. Back in 1994, third place was achieved in the United States.

However, Sweden have never won back-to-back World Cups games without the need of a penalty shootout. That method of victory may be required later...

Those of you who followed our coverage of Brazil against Mexico yesterday would have read that Mexico have played the most World Cup games without winning the Jules Rimet Trophy. Well, Sweden have played the second most with today's contest being their 50th in the competition.

Sweden hit the headlines when beating Italy in order to qualify for this tournament but their only two wins in seven outings have come at this tournament. They were not exactly in form before the trip to Russia.

The signs are good that this could be the start of a resurgence on the international scene. Only five of this squad are aged 31 or above and you would expect Sweden to improve with more competitive matches in the Nations League and the next European Championship.

Switzerland made it through their group without suffering a defeat. They may have been held by Costa Rica in their last fixture, but holding Brazil and edging out Serbia impressed a lot of people and they are probably the marginal favourites for this game.

They are competing in their fourth successive World Cup but they have not made the quarter-finals since 1954 when they hosted the event! It feels like this team is hitting its peak and this is a huge occasion for Swiss football.

The last 16 was reached in each of 1994, 2006 and 2014 but on all three occasions, Switzerland failed to score a goal in defeats to Spain, Ukraine and Argentina.

However, Swiss fans will be positive. Just one defeat has been suffered in 25 matches, with that coming to Portugal back in October.

Lichtsteiner would have become the third most-capped player for Switzerland had he been available today. He is currently level with Stephane Chapuisat. Only Alain Geiger and Heinz Hermann have featured more than the pair. The new Arsenal signing has more than one reason why he wants his country to win this match!

PREDICTION! We are expecting a tight match between two evenly-matched teams so do not be surprised if we finish 1-1 and head into extra time, where Switzerland's extra flair may prove key.

HEAD TO HEAD! Tuesday's showdown represents the 28th meeting between the two nations with both teams having registered 10 victories apiece.

However, just three matches have taken place since 1995 with Sweden recording a win and two draws. The last encounter took place in 2002 as the sides played out a 1-1 draw in Malmo.

Despite their first-ever meeting coming all the way back in 1920, these teams have never faced off at a Major tournament!

There are as many as six players who are one yellow card away from a suspension. Swedish trio Mikael Lustig, Albin Ekdal and Viktor Claesson are all close to a one-match ban, as are Denis Zakaria, Valon Behrami and Xherdan Shaqiri for Switzerland.

It's time for the two teams to start making their out in St Petersburg. It is just the 19C, which I am sure has been welcomed by both teams!

A reminder of the two starting lineups...

SWEDEN XI: Olsen; Lustig, Lindelof, Granqvist, Augustinsson; Claesson, Svensson, Ekdal, Forsberg; Berg, Toivonen

SWITZERLAND XI: Sommer; Lang, Djourou, Akanji, Rodriguez; Behrami, Xhaka; Shaqiri, Dzemaili, Zuber; Drmic


KICKOFF! Sweden get us underway!

SHOT! Has this set the tone? Sweden make a mistake and Shaqiri opts to take the shot on from 35 yards, which goes wide of the target.

Sweden regain their composure and win a free kick on the left-hand side, only for Xhaka to clear the ball once it is delivered into the penalty area.

It has been a lively start with all of the usual suspects shirking no early challenges. We don't expect the pace of this game to be as relentless as some of the previous fixtures in this tournament.

SHOT! Switzerland get another long-range strike in through Zubar but his curling effort goes straight at Olsen from 20 yards.

CHANCE! Huge chance for Sweden. The ball is cleverly flicked through to the advancing Berg but the forward slices his half-volley with just Olsen to beat.

SHOT! Sweden are building a head of steam here. Switzerland make an error in their own half and Sweden are ready to pounce. A goalbound shot is blocked but the ball sits up well for Ekdal on the edge of the area, who drills a volley just over the crossbar.

I thought this match would be tight but it's anything but. Dzemaili looks to latch onto a through-ball but the playmaker is inches away from making a connection after getting in behind the defence.

Sweden revert back to playing possession football but it isn't long before they are back on the offensive. This has been a promising start from both teams.

Switzerland are wasting little time in getting Shaqiri involved and the Stoke City winger almost picks out a teammate with an inswinging cross. A bit lower and it's an header from 10 yards.

Despite a back-and-forth nature to this contest, we are still yet to see either goalkeeper tested. That will surely change because both teams are showing plenty of ambition.

Sweden are very wary of the threat that Shaqiri brings to the table. They are doing everything to keep the winger playing nothing more than simple passes.

Little else to report over the past couple of minutes. Both sides now appear more content to keep hold of the ball and keep men behind it.

Behrami somehow avoids a booking for preventing Forsberg from leading a counter-attack. Behrami is one yellow card away from suspension so he is extremely fortunate.

CHANCE! Another Switzerland cross from the right - this time from Lang - finds Zuber but his header goes a few yards over the crossbar at the near post.

Lang has only been brought into the team as a replacement for Lichtsteiner but he can certainly cross a ball. Switzerland's best chance of a goal appears to be from the right.

SAVE! Finally, a significant save from one of the goalkeepers. Berg volleys the ball into the ground from 12 yards but it has enough pace on it to force Sommer to make an excellent stop down to his right.

BOOKING! There is little difference between this challenge and Behrami's earlier on. However, the referee decides to book Lustig and he is now out of any quarter-final.

You'd have to say that Switzerland are seeing more of the ball but so far, Sweden are making better use of it. Neither manager will be too unhappy with how things have progressed.

Sweden win a deep free kick and it is delivered into the penalty area where Granqvist is waiting. The captain wins the header but his knockdown fails to find a teammate.

It feels like one goal could be enough to win this. Both teams just seem well-matched and they are cancelling each other out.

CHANCE! Switzerland should be ahead. Zuber does well down the left before teeing up Dzemaili around 16 yards on goal, but the playmaker side-foots his effort over the crossbar. He should probably be scoring from there.

SHOT! Now Sweden go close. Forsberg is standing over a 30-yard free kick and his strike is deflected marginally wide of the post. Sommer appeared to be beaten.

CHANCE! Sweden waste another massive opportunity. A cross from the right finds Ekdal all on his own at the back post but the midfielder volleys high over the crossbar from about eight yards out.

The threat being offered by Sweden has resulted in a more cautious approach from Switzerland, who are aware that the half-time whistle is just around the corner.

There will be one minute of added-on time.

HALF TIME: Sweden 0-0 Switzerland

The half-time whistle goes in St Petersburg and we remain on level terms. This game has had its moments but for the most part, both teams have struggled to put together a sustained spell of pressure. All to play for in the second half.

The best chances have gone to Sweden. During the early stages of the game, Berg should have done much better with a half-volley after being played through on goal while later in the half, Ekdal somehow missed the target when being found all on his own at the back post.

As for Switzerland, their best opportunity went the way of Dzemaili, who failed to test Olsen in the Sweden goal when being teed up in a central position. Zuber and Shaqiri have been their team's best players.

The two teams are making their way back out in St Petersburg. Will we get any goals in this second half? Let's hope so!

KICKOFF! Switzerland get us back underway.

Sweden have the better of the opening exchanges with a couple of balls being delivered into the box from a set piece and a long throw, but nothing comes from either and Switzerland have a goal kick.

SHOT! More good play from Sweden - more specifically Forsberg - leads to another attack but after a cross is knocked own for Toivonen, the former Sunderland man volleys high over the crossbar.

Switzerland have come back into this over the past couple of minutes but on two occasions, they have failed to make the most of low crosses being delivered from the byline.

Sweden are being forced to get everyone behind the ball because Switzerland are really coming on strong now. However, Shaqiri should be booked for halting a counter-attack. He's on a yellow card too.

Nothing to report from the last two minutes, mainly due to a knock picked up by Ekdal who is fine to continue. It won't be long before we are seeing some substitutions.

Things have gotten extremely one-paced. Sweden are happy to keep hold of the ball for now. There is very little happening.

Sweden finally decide to show some more ambition but Forsberg wants to be too clever in the final third instead of getting a shot away and the chance is soon lost.

BOOKING! Behrami goes into the book. Based on this challenge alone, it's harsh, but he can have no complaints after he was fortunate to avoid a yellow card in the first half. Behrami is now out of any quarter-final.

There is no denying that Forsberg carries Sweden's biggest threat but he is still trying to do too much with the ball. On this occasion, though, he wins a free kick on the edge of the penalty area.

Nothing comes from the set pieces as Forsberg manages to hit both players in the wall. This game needs a change in tempo and personnel.

GOAL! Sweden 1-0 Switzerland (Emil Forsberg)

See, Emil - this is what can happen when you don't try to be too clever! Sweden take the lead through the RB Leipzig man, who advances past a player on the edge of the area before his strike is deflected into the top corner by Akanji. Sommer is saving it without the intervention.

BOOKING! Xhaka goes into the book for halting a break-away. Sweden have their tails up now.

SHOT! Another half a chance for Sweden through Ekdal, who blazes over the bar from 25 yards. There was no pressure on the midfielder so he should be doing better.

Shaqiri is starting to get more involved. The Stoke City winger had gone a bit quiet. However, nothing comes from a shot which is deflected wide and an inswinging corner which needs to flicked clear by a defender.

SUBSTITUTIONS! Switzerland decide to make a double change with Embolo and Seferovic being introduced for Zuber and Dzemaili.

It has been all Switzerland over the past five minutes but they are yet to force a save out of Olsen in this match. Sweden are looking effective in defence.

Better from Sweden who manage to win a corner from the left but once the ball had reached the far side of the penalty area, they failed to create an opportunity. Still no alterations from the Swedes.

Switzerland respond with a delightful delivery from the left through Rodriguez but more strong defending from Sweden means that the Swiss only win a corner.

CHANCE! Nearly an equaliser for Switzerland. The resulting set piece is met by Embolo who sends a header towards the bottom corner, but Forsberg is there to clear off the line.

SUBSTITUTIONS! Two changes for Sweden as Martin Olsson comes on for Forsberg and Krafth is being introduced for Lustig.

Just the six minutes to go. Have Switzerland got what it takes to find an equaliser? They are starting to dominate without necessarily looking like scoring.

As this match has progressed, Rodriguez has become a bigger threat on the left but although his crosses are causing problems for the Sweden defence, he cannot find a teammate.

Sweden have just won a corner on the left but possession was quickly conceded to Switzerland. They need to make better use of the ball in those situations in order to waste a bit of time.

SUBSTITUTION! A third switch for Sweden sees Thelin introduced for Berg.

CHANCE! Olsen finally has to make a save! Another outstanding cross from Rodriguez finds Seferovic, but his header towards the far corner is well held by the goalkeeper.

PENALTY TO SWEDEN! Olsson is played through on goal and Lang brings him down. It's a definite red card but did the foul come outside of the box?

VAR has got involved and now it is only a free kick! It is the correct decision too with the initial push coming outside of the box.

FULL TIME: Sweden 1-0 Switzerland

The final whistle goes in St Petersburg and Sweden have held on to secure a place in the quarter-finals with a 1-0 win. Emil Forsberg's deflected strike did the damage and Sweden deserve their win for showing more ambition throughout the contest. Switzerland again fail to score a goal in a knockout stage match.

That will be all from Sports Mole for this match. Thank you for joining us today and we hope to see you again soon.

If you would like to read our on-the-whistle match report, you can do so by clicking here. Goodbye for now.


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