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But the game was already up.

The match quickly became one-paced with both teams seemingly wary about conceding the opening goal, but Sweden found a way to break the deadlock midway through the second half through Forsberg, whose shot from the edge of the box was deflected into the top corner by Manuel Akanji.

And while they have had a number of highly distinguished players to don the famous yellow and blue of Sweden in recent decades - notably Henrik Larsson and Zlatan Ibrahimovic - the match against Switzerland was not the riveting affair fitting for their half-century milestone.

Switzerland came into the match as the side with arguably the greater wealth of attacking talent, but their four shots on target over the 90 minutes told its own story. The scoreline was a fair reflection of the game, and of both sides' lack of quality in the final third of the pitch.

Victor Lindelof slipped on the ball in the first 10 seconds and that set the tone for the first half, which was largely a collection of mishit passes, heavy touches and skewed shots.

Sweden have earned a place in the quarter-finals of the World Cup with a hard-earned 1-0 victory over Switzerland in Tuesday's clash in St Petersburg.

Sweden's biggest strength has been their defensive solidity, but Lustig's suspension means they will have to change their backline for Saturday.

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Mikael Lustig's clearance kept a dangerous-looking cross away from Zuber before, as the half-hour approached, Yann Sommer made a fine low save to keep out Marcus Berg's bouncing strike.

Xherdan Shaqiri looked to pull the strings for Switzerland and he imposed himself on the game early by delivering risky balls for Blerim Dzemaili and Josip Drmic, but neither could make the a lot of them.

Sweden's goalkeeper Robin Olsen (left) and midfielder Emil Forsberg defend their goal during their 2018 World Cup round of 16 match against Switzerland at the Saint Petersburg Stadium in Saint Petersburg on July 3, 2018.

With so much at stake for both nations, it would be no surprise to see a cagey opening and dabblebet's 11/10 (2.10) quote for the first half to end goalless could well provide punters with a path to profit.

Switzerland twice went close to grabbing an equaliser, as Djourou's header dribbled agonisingly across the goal-line and substitute Haris Seferovic drew a late save from close range.

Sweden were given a late penalty when Michael Lang was sent off for bringing down Martin Olsson when through on goal, but after consulting VAR the foul was judged to be outside the area and a free-kick awarded instead. Lang's red card stood and Sweden held on.


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