Switzerland beat Portugal 1-0 in the Nations League

League of Nations

National coach Murat Yakin says after his devastating victory over Portugal: – I hope to be single soon …

Switzerland defeated Portugal 1-0 in the League of Nations – their first victory in 2022 and a strong reaction from the previous three defeats. Now there is a summer break for the national team.

Finally, a cause for celebration: The Swiss celebrate their 1-0 defeat to Haris Seferovic (2nd from right).

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His smile was back! When Murat Yakin says goodbye just before midnight, he does so in the best of humor. Of course, because a 1-0 win against Portugal is good for the soul. But also because after 17 days with the national team there are a few days off – it’s comparable to a big tournament. Yakin and his family will recover from the hardships of the past few days. And a little while playing golf. “Hope to be single soon,” he says with a smile. It is based on his golf handicap (currently: 11), not his relationship status.

Relief after winning: Murat Yakin.

Relief after winning: Murat Yakin.

Fresh focus

Players may also leave the national camp immediately after the match. Now it’s time to recharge your batteries during the (definitely too short) holidays after the long season. With the prospect that the new season will not be less intense due to the upcoming World Cup from November 21 to December 18. In Germany and England 5/6. August continues, in Italy and Spain a week later. In Switzerland, the championship starts on July 17.

Special praise from Yakin to Captain Xhaka and Central Defense

In the first post-Portugal analysis, Yakin says: “We continued with Spain where we left off. They were active and in motion with great intensity. And we drew the right conclusions from the previous games. ” Yakin gave special praise to Captain Granit Xhaka. “He was fantastic, he improved from game to game and made almost no mistakes within 90 minutes.” And the coach of the national team again mentioned the stability of the defense. It was the first time in this move that the Akanji / Elvedi duo played central defense together – and it was immediately noticeable.

The most beautiful photos from the game:

Hope to stay in the league returned

A 1-0 victory against Portugal is Switzerland’s first win in a sixth attempt in an international match 2022. It is also the first victory over a large nation since a legendary 5-2 victory against Belgium in November 2018. As the Czech Republic lost 0-2 to Spain in the same time they lost, the hope of Switzerland remaining in the League A is still intact. The last two matches of this Nations League campaign are scheduled for September, first in Spain (September 24) and then in St. Gallen against the Czech Republic (September 27).

This was the game between Switzerland and Portugal

Switzerland’s victory is especially sweet as it is a successful rematch for last week’s 0: 4 in Lisbon. These two performances are completely different. Even if he shivered 1-0 in the end, Nati’s victory is well deserved. Because it shows a passionate and solidary performance. And of course also thanks to goalkeeper Jonas Omlin who is excellent.

With this victory in the baggage, the Swiss can still go on a summer break with good feelings. If it is true that the last impression counts, then confidence in the World Cup may increase again. Who knows, maybe there will even be a congress with Portugal – in the 1/8 finals. This is when Switzerland ends its group with Cameroon, Brazil and Serbia in second place. The Portuguese, in turn, left behind Uruguay, Ghana and South Korea.

However, there is still a long way to go until then. The Swiss certainly realize that in some areas they still have to improve significantly ahead of the highlight of the season.

Fastest national goal since 1988

Time and time again the Swiss have lost in the last three matches. Each time they conceded a goal in the first quarter of an hour. At least this time, would it be possible to start the game unscathed?

And how it works! It’s even a real dream start. Only 56 seconds have passed as Haris Seferovic miraculously steers the ball into the Portuguese net. Nati’s last goal was scored in the first minute of the match in 1988 (Alain Sutter against Luxembourg).

A great goal: Seferovic hits his head - as he did twice in the eighth-finals against France.

A great goal: Seferovic hits his head – as he did twice in the eighth-finals against France.

Michael Buholzer / AP / keystone-sda.ch

In the first game, the Swiss were blamed because the pressing didn’t work at all, which resulted in a lot of quick counterattacks. This time, it is the perfectly executed embossing that leads to the goal. Apart from the finish of Seferovic, the Widmer cross was also a real treat.

The goal was a little liberation for Seferovic. He, who plays for Benfica, has only played 528 minutes this season with a calf injury. That is why the coach of the national team, Murat Yakin, is under special observation. The fact is: Seferovic always does a great job in the penalty area and has become a kind of king of the skies. He has already scored his two head goals in the last 16 European championships against France.

Early injury to Xherdan Shaqiri

For a short while after 12 minutes, it seemed that it could be even better for Nati. Because Croatian judge Jovic pointed to a penalty point after the deal. But since Elvedi had committed a foul shortly before, he backed away from this decision after seeing the TV pictures.

A little later, Shaqiri, who provoked the canceled sentence, was eliminated. While sprinting, his thigh suddenly tightened. “I hope it’s nothing serious,” he said after the game.

Okafor was allowed to play for Shaqiri. It wasn’t the only forced change. A very strong Widmer injured his knee in a defensive action, somehow dragged himself into the break – then Steffen replaced him. Yes, Steffen, on the right-back, because neither Lotomba nor Mbabu were on the score sheet. The Wolfsburg player fared much better than in Portugal. He also received praise from Coach Yakin.

Portugal increased the pressure – but Ronaldo was noticeably absent

In the second half, pressure from the Portuguese to equalize was sometimes strong. Which also resulted in one or the other unnecessary individual mistake of Switzerland. But Nati always defended themselves in solidarity and could always rely on Omlin. “It was a great use for the number 2 battle,” said Yakin. She wants to calmly discuss the decision. In any case, with Yann Sommer, Gregor Kobel and Omlin, Switzerland has an outstanding trio in their ranks.

In the last few minutes, Leonidas Stergiou was also able to defend his lead in time. It was the first international match of the St. Gallen defender. The forward Zeki Amdouni was unable to enter the field as Yakin had to make all five substitutions.

He did not travel to Geneva: Cristiano Ronaldo.

He did not travel to Geneva: Cristiano Ronaldo.

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Despite all the joy at this Swiss victory, one thing cannot be forgotten: Cristiano Ronaldo was absent that evening. He didn’t even go to Switzerland to rest for a few days. Even if the superstar is already 37, the Portuguese are a completely different team without him than with him.

But at the moment the Swiss shouldn’t care. For them, only the result matters. This is a win that could be very valuable in the next few months.

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