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Dublin: 14 °C Sunday 24 June, 2018

Switzerland silence RTÉ doubters by rocking Ecuador in injury time

The world’s sixth best side (if you believe the FIFA rankings) edged out the Central Americans after a Lo-Fi performance.

Admir Mehmedi (18) celebrates after scoring his side's first goal.
Admir Mehmedi (18) celebrates after scoring his side's first goal.
Image: Michael Sohn

Switzerland 2-1 Ecuador

SWITZERLAND BEAT ECUADOR 2-1 after Haris Seferović roofed an injury-time equaliser. Admir Mehmedi headed in a 47th minute equaliser for the Swiss to cancel out Enner Valencia’s well-taken opener.

Trailing 1-0 after a less than mind-blowing first-half, RTÉ pundits Richie Sadlier and Ronnie Whelan debated the merits of the Swiss being ranked sixth in the world. Former Liverpool and Ireland midfielder Whelan remarked that the Swiss’ qualifying group must have been crammed with poor sides for Ottmar Hitzfeld’s men to reach the competition so comfortably.

Enner Valencia opened the scoring after 21 minutes with a cushioned header from a whipped-in free-kick.

Mehmedi levelled matters just after the break when he was inexplicably allowed to head home from a standing position in the Ecuador six-yard box.

With the game heading of a 1-1 draw Valon Behrami made a sliding tackle in the box, strode forward, rode a hefty tackle and set up a last-ditch attack. With the last action of the game Seferović got ahead of his marker to slam home the winner from close range.

Post-match, Whelan gave most of the credit to former Bayern Munich boss Hitzfeld for his tactical changes at half-time, one of which was the introduction of Mehmedi.

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Patrick McCarry

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