Own goal kills Brazil

Switzer­land notches stun­ning win over Con­fed­er­a­tions Cup champ

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - SPORTS - By REUTERS in Basel, Switzer­land

Brazil full­back Dani Alves scored an em­bar­rass­ing own goal to end his team’s run of six straight wins and send it tum­bling to a 1-0 de­feat against Switzer­land in a friendly on Wed­nes­day. Alves scored on his own net at the start of the sec­ond half to give the feisty Swiss just re­ward for tak­ing the match to the ir­ri­ta­ble 2014 World Cup host.

Fa r f rom be­ing over­awed by fac­ing a Brazil side that de­mol­ished Spain 3- 0 in the Con­fed­er­a­tions Cup fi­nal in June, un­sung Switzer­land’s hard tack­ling and cheeky skills clearly un­nerved the South Amer­i­cans.

Xher­dan Shaqiri pro­duced an in­spired per­for­mance as he up­staged Brazil for­ward Ney­mar, who was jeered sev­eral times by the crowd af­ter fall­ing over and fail­ing to win a free kick.

Brazil won all five matches at the Con­fed­er­a­tions Cup and beat France 3-0 in a friendly be­fore that tour­na­ment.

How­ever, Brazil coach Luiz Felipe Sco­lari was un­ruf­fled by the shock de­feat.

Switzer­land quickly got un­der the vis­i­tor’s skin when Stephan Licht­en­steiner tan­gled with Ney­mar and the imp­ish Shaqiri re­peat­edly jinked around Brazil­ian de­fend­ers, who clearly did not en­joy be­ing on the re­ceiv­ing end of some trick­ery.

“The re­sult was not a sur­prise be­cause we weren’t match fit and we were fac­ing a team whose play­ers have com­pleted their pre­sea­son and are in much bet­ter shape than ours,” Sco­lari said.

“This ( Au­gust date) is an im­pos­si­ble date to play and it ap­pears to me that from next year, FIFA will re­move it.

“We wanted more, we wanted to win, we had chances, we had more chances to score. But it’s within our ex­pec­ta­tions and what I told you be­fore the game ... we have a long way to go be­fore the World Cup.”

His op­po­site num­ber, Ottmar Hitzfeld, re­fused to get car­ried away and said next month’s World Cup qual­i­fier at home to Ice­land would be a stiffer test.

“Ev­ery win is good for the self- con­fi­dence but most im­por­tant now are three points against Ice­land, when there will be more pres­sure,” said the Ger­man.

Tem­pers frayed mid­way through the first half when a rash chal­lenge by Ney­mar led to a scuf­fle on the touch­line and yel­low cards for the Brazil­ian and Valon Behrami.

Marcelo was then lucky to es­cape a book­ing for a rough tackle on Shaqiri.

Hav­ing threat­ened sev­eral times in the first half, Switzer­land went ahead in the 47th minute when Hans Se­fer­ovic crossed from the right and Alves, un­der no real pres­sure, headed into his own goal at the far post.

Brazil nearly gave an­other goal away when goal­keeper Jef­fer­son slipped as he at­tempted to clear an awkward Dante back pass, but he re­cov­ered just in time to scram­ble the ball away from the lurk­ing Se­fer­ovic.

Shaqiri was a show apart as he twice tested Jef­fer­son with lone-range shots in the firsthalf and nearly scored a sec­ond with a rasp­ing drive mid­way through the sec­ond.

There were some flashes from Ney­mar early on while Paulinho headed against the cross­bar and Os­car should have opened the scor­ing when he went clear just be­fore the break.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from China

© PressReader. All rights reserved.