- The Swiss national team has successfully started qualifying for the World Cup for the final round in Qatar in 2022.
- The team of coach Vladimir Petkovic wins away in Sofia against Bulgaria 3-1.
- The Swiss score their 3 goals in the first 12 minutes, in the second half they lose a lot.
- In the second game of the day in Group C, Italy will face Northern Ireland.
After a quarter of an hour of playing, he could finally assess whether it would be something from a Swiss point of view against the Bulgarians, said SRF expert Beni Huggel in the run-up to the game. Well, the analysis shouldn’t have been too difficult for him at the time mentioned.
Because the Swiss started like the fire brigade, even made a start steeped in history. After exactly 12 minutes of play, the Petkovic squad was already leading 3-0 – this had never happened in the history of the senior national team.
- 7th minute: Ricardo Rodriguez, who was very committed at the beginning, crossed into the dangerous zone, Breel Embolo effortlessly prevailed in the air duel and nodded to 1-0.
- 10th minute: Xherdan Shaqiri stabs a pass from Steven Zuber into the depths as fast as lightning and brings the ball with the first touch of the ball in the middle on Haris Seferovic. This remains ice cold and marks his 20th international goal.
- 12.Minute: Shaqiri combines with Remo Freuler on the right side, penetrates the baseline into the penalty area and could go back. But the veteran aims cheekily at the gap between Bulgaria goalie Plamen Iliev and the post. The ball slips through, Steven Zuber dusts on the goal line.
So the game was apparently decided early. At this point in time, the completely overrun Bulgarians had 5 (!) Passports on their account, while Switzerland had everything under control. Even when the team around ball distributor Granit Xhaka downshifted a few gears, there was an impressive 74 percent possession during the break.
Freuler dropouts with consequences
In the second half, however, with the lead in the back (and in the head), Switzerland then reduced a lot. The first shock only 44 seconds after the restart: Freuler played blindly to the middle and into no man’s land. Kiril Despodov stormed up and scored with a direct shot against the “shifting direction” of goalie Yann Sommer to 1: 3. The goal scorer injured himself during this action and had to leave the field.
The ease of the red-and-whites from the first round was gone, Bulgaria came up better. After an hour, Captain Georgi Kostadinov checked Sommer with his head, but the latter threw up his hands and skillfully parried. The Swiss freestyle developed into a work victory. In the end, Bulgaria lacked the quality to really put their opponents in trouble.
In the end, the expected 3 points remain on the Swiss account. The next game is on Sunday in St. Gallen against Lithuania (from 20:20 on SRF two).
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Successful start World Cup qualification Switzerland defeats Bulgaria Blitzstart Sport