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Rodriguez proves the scourge of Northern Ireland

13 November, 2017, 02:40 | Author: Joan Malone
  • Switzerland are awarded a penalty after an alleged handball by Corry Evans at Windsor Park

There were chances at both ends and Northern Ireland went close to equalising late on.

Switzerland have qualified for the Federation Internationale de Football Association 2018 World Cup after playing a 0-0 draw against visiting Northern Ireland in the second leg of the European play-off on Sunday.

Still, Switzerland dominated much of the first half and should have sealed its place at a fourth straight World Cup much earlier.

Forward Haris Seferovic was the biggest culprit and was jeered off by the home crowd when he was substituted.

Arsenal midfielder Granit Xhaka has taken aim at Northern Ireland's players.

Northern Ireland saw their World Cup dream die in Basel on Sunday evening, though it was a controversial penalty three days earlier that ultimately sent Switzerland through to Russian Federation. "I'm just happy that we've done it".

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"We are a good team, I think we are a better team than Northern Ireland, and tomorrow with all the fans and all the support we have here, we want to make them proud and we want to qualify for Russian Federation". The cruelty is that it was decided by a real poor decision in the first leg and a penalty that should never have been. Shaqiri's shot forced Michael McGovern down low to save, Seferovic's header hit Zuber, Zuber himself had a shot saved by McGovern's legs before flashing another effort wide.

Numerous other chances went begging and the Swiss lost their swagger as the game wore on.

Seferovic should have settled it in the 85th minute but instead shot high and wide and was substituted nearly immediately. The players are devastated but I couldn't be any prouder.

"We will take it match by match, opponent by opponent and we're not setting any limits".

O'Neill's men piled the pressure on towards the end and looked particularly threatening with Dallas on the left flank, but they were ultimately guilty of trying to over play in the final third.

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