Switzerland 1-0 Portugal: Seferović's record-breaking goal seals shock win for Swiss
Sunday, 12 June 2022
Haris Seferović scored the UEFA Nations League's fastest-ever goal as Switzerland beat Portugal 1-0 in Group A2.
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Switzerland secured their first win of the UEFA Nations League campaign and turned Group A2 on its head with a 1-0 win against Portugal in Geneva.
1' Seferović heads home
18' Omlin keeps out Danilo header
49' André Silva strike saved by legs of Omlin
62' Seferović fires across face of goal
63' Swiss keeper denies Bernardo Silva
71' No12 stops Gonçalo Guedes effort
78' Diogo Jota header tests Omlin
Match in brief: Seferović gives Swiss early head start
The hosts belied their position at the bottom of Group A2 by starting on the front foot against a much-changed Portugal side, who were without their talisman Cristiano Ronaldo.
It took just 57 seconds for Switzerland to go in front, Silvan Widmer's teasing delivery from the right picking out Haris Seferović in the box. The Benfica forward showed great awareness to direct his powerful header into the far corner of the net, just out of the reach of the helpless Rui Patrício.
Portugal took time to adjust after the early shock and created their best opportunity of the first half 17 minutes in. Bruno Fernandes' deep corner was nodded back into the danger area by Rúben Neves and Danilo's powerful header was pushed away expertly by Jonas Omlin.
The visitors looked a different proposition after the interval and it took just four minutes for the 2019 champions to test the Swiss goalkeeper. André Silva collected a Nuno Mendes pass, side-footing a low strike that Omlin kept out with his legs.
Switzerland were still a threat on the counter and Seferović could have added a second but dragged his low shot across the face of goal.
Fernando Santos' men looked buoyed by the introduction of the likes of Gonçalo Guedes, Diogo Jota and Bernardo Silva during the second period and all three provided extra attacking impetus, but Omlin was up to everything they threw at him.
Daniel Thacker, match reporter
This was an intelligent, determined showing from the hosts to claim their first win in the section and of the calendar year, in the process ending Portugal's unbeaten Group A2 start. Seferović's goal will take the headlines (and it was indeed a superb move and cross from Widmer), but the hosts were arguably more indebted to Omlin in goal, who produced four excellent saves.
The visitors' second-half performance, following the introduction of Bernardo Silva, means that Santos, despite his side's first defeat in the group, will depart with enough positives to focus the mind.
Jonas Omlin, Switzerland goalkeeper: "We showed today what we're capable of. We worked really well, the whole team ... I'm pleased we kept a clean sheet today."
Granit Xhaka, Switzerland captain: "I had a good feeling before the game because I knew we could beat a team like Portugal, a bigger team, because we have the quality to. I'm more than happy for the team, for the people outside who are always supporting us. A big three points for us today."
Fernando Santos, Portugal coach: "A goal conceded inside 60 seconds ends up changing the game, and the team took time to find themselves but they managed to pick themselves up. In the second half the team did everything it had to do. It lacked a bit of effectiveness, it was the anxiety of wanting to score. We did a lot of good things in the second half and I think this result was unfair."
Danilo, Portugal defender: "We had a poor first half. We conceded a goal in a way that shouldn't happen. We were a little poorly organised at the cross and we conceded as a result. We tried to react, but unfortunately it was not our day for the ball to go in. We still have two games and if we win both, we qualify."
- Seferović's goal was timed at 57 seconds, the fastest-ever in the UEFA Nations League.
- The forward became the first player to score in the opening minute for the Swiss national side since Alain Sutter in 1988.
- Switzerland have won their last three home meetings against Portugal.
- This win ended a run of three successive UEFA Nations League defeats for the Swiss.
Switzerland: Omlin; Widmer (Steffen 46), Akanji, Elvedi, Rodríguez (Stergiou 79); Freuler, Xhaka, Sow (Aebischer 79); Shaqiri (Okafor 21), Seferović, Embolo (Zuber 65)
Portugal: Rui Patrício; João Cancelo, Pepe, Danilo, Nuno Mendes; Bruno Fernandes (Matheus Nunes 74), Rúben Neves (Ricardo Horta 82), Otávio (Gonçalo Guedes 46); Rafael Leão (Diogo Jota 62), André Silva, Vitinha (Bernardo Silva 62)
Group A2 Live now
What happens after the UEFA Nations League group stage?
The four group winners in League A will advance to the knockout finals with, in principle, one appointed as hosts. The semi-finals will be played on 14 and 15 June 2023 with the final and third-place play-off to follow on 18 June
The teams finishing fourth in the groups in League A will be relegated to League B for the 2024/25 edition.