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Norway deny Group E leaders Switzerland

Published: Friday 12 October 2012, 22.45CET
Switzerland 1-1 Norway
Mario Gavranović looked to have earned the hosts a third straight win with a 79th-minute opener, but Norway struck back through Brede Hangeland.
Norway deny Group E leaders Switzerland
Tarik Elyounoussi of Norway vies for possession with Switzerland's Xherdan Shaqiri ©AFP/Getty Images
Published: Friday 12 October 2012, 22.45CET

Norway deny Group E leaders Switzerland

Switzerland 1-1 Norway
Mario Gavranović looked to have earned the hosts a third straight win with a 79th-minute opener, but Norway struck back through Brede Hangeland.

Despite having a wealth of chances, Switzerland were forced to settle for a 1-1 draw in their FIFA World Cup qualifying Group E game against Norway.

Mario Gavranović looked to have earned the Swiss their third straight win when he struck with 11 minutes left, but Norway were swift to equalise through captain Brede Hangeland. The result leaves Switzerland top of the section on seven points, with Norway three behind in third.

Switzerland dominated from the off, Tranquillo Barnetta and Xherdan Shaqiri both spurning decent chances inside four minutes. The visitors, however, responded and Ottmar Hitzfeld's team were left indebted to two superb Diego Benaglio saves to deny Hangeland and Vegard Forren.

Granit Xhaka also could have scored shortly after, before Barnetta's header struck a post. The Swiss were in control of the match but had only Stephan Lichtsteiner's long-range shot to show for the rest of their first-half efforts.

Shaqiri and Barnetta passed up further opportunities after the interval, before the hosts' dominance was finally rewarded when Xhaka headed on Shaqiri's corner and Gavranović finished from close range. That lead lasted less than two minutes, though, Hangeland heading in from John Arne Riise's corner with nine minutes remaining.

Egil Olsen's side nearly snatched all three points, but Forren was thwarted by a fine stop from Benaglio and Tarik Elyounoussi was denied by the woodwork.

Last updated: 13/10/12 0.22CET

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