Manager rebukes Swiss players' nationalist gesture during Serbia game

Supporters of the Serbian men's national football team wrapped in flags in a street ahead of the2018 FIFA World Cup Group E match between Serbia and Swizerland

Supporters of the Serbian men's national football team wrapped in flags in a street ahead of the2018 FIFA World Cup Group E match between Serbia and Swizerland

The victory puts Switzerland in a strong position to qualify from Group E following their 1-1 draw with five-time world champions Brazil. Relations between Serbia and Kosovo have remained fraught, as Serbia refuses to recognize its former province as an independent nation.

Meanwhile Switzerland will meet already-eliminated Costa Rica and the way they improved throughout the course of this game will give their Bosnian coach every confidence that they can secure the point they need against Costa Rica to be sure of a place in the knockout stages for the second consecutive World Cup.

"You should never mix politics and football", Petkovic said. I spoke to the father of one of our players who is Albanian, and he told me about this history.

The game between Switzerland and Serbia was more than just 90 minutes of football for Xherdan Shaqiri and Granit Xhaka - both of Kosovan-Albanian descent.

And Shaqiri would secure the points on the stroke of 90 minutes when he broke behind the defence and rolled his shot past a charging Stojkovic to make Switzerland the first team to score a come-from-behind victory in Russian Federation. Replying to the criticism about the celebration, Xhaka said that it was for the people, his supporter, his homeland, and for his parent's root, and claimed that the celebration was purely emotional.

"I'm not into politics", he said, also speaking through an interpreter.

"We are not clear how the German referee could have been appointed for the match between Switzerland and Serbia, when it is well known that one of Swiss confederation cantons is a German canton", Serbia said in its statement. Another post followed, featuring images of he and Shaqiri doing their celebrations.

To say sport should stay on the field and doesn't trasncend life and society is incorrect.

The lone meeting between these two sides came in an friendly match in 2014 that ended in a 1-0 Brazil victory.

The coach also dismissed questions about the celebrations of his two goal-scorers, who are both of Albanian heritage. The Swiss will advance to the round of 16 if they beat Costa Rica on Wednesday in Nizhny Novgorod.

Shaqiri hit the post soon after with a curling attempt from the right edge of the Serbia box.

Most Clean sheets: The first match of the day saw Brazil's Alisson claim a clean sheet while the second match also saw Nigeria's goalkeeper Francis Uzoho bag concede no goals.

With Mitrovic proving a handful for the Swiss defence, Serbia threatened to over-run their opponents and missed another chance when a corner flew across the face of goal and Dusko Tosic just failed to make contact.

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