Wales and Switzerland battled to a 1-1 draw in their opening European Championship match at the Olympic Stadium in Baku.
It was Wales who had the best chance of the first half when a Kieffer Moore header forced a smart save from Yann Sommer. Thereafter Switzerland took charge with a series of dangerous crosses into the Swiss area, and Haris Seferovic missed a good chance from a wide angle at the end of the half.
The Swiss took the lead early in the second half when Breel Embolo headed home from a corner. Moore equalised with glancing header with 16 minutes to go. Substitute Mario Gavranovic thought he’d won it for Switzerland with a late volley, but it was ruled out after a VAR check.
Wales stay in Baku to face Turkey on Wednesday, while Switzerland travel to Rome to play Italy later that day.
Is this a chance missed for both sides? The Swiss manager Vladimir Petkovic has been saying that this was their most important match in the group. Now both his team and Wales will have to face Italy in Rome and a Turkish team with strong local support in Baku. With one point rather than three, the path to the knockout rounds just got tougher for both sides.
MAN OF THE MATCH
Breel Embolo (Switzerland) - Embolo took charge of this match early in the second half, running dangerously at the Welsh defence and forcing two good saves from Ward thereafter. He headed in Switzerland’s goal and came within inches of extending the lead to 2-0; by a distance he was the best attacking player in the pitch.
Gales-Suiza: Celebración de Embolo
Image credit: Getty Images
Wales (4-3-3): Ward 7; Roberts 7, Mepham 6, Rodon 6, Davies 6; Allen 6, Morrell 6, Ramsey 7; Bale 6, Moore 7, James 7. Subs: Brooks 6, Ampadu 6
15’ GOOD SAVE! What was I saying about Moore? James skips past his man on the left and crosses dangerously into the area. Moore rises and heads the ball back towards the top corner, and an instinctive hand from Sommer turns the ball over the bar for a corner.
45+1’ CHANCE! Mbabu whips a ball into Embolo in the area, who backs Mepham deeper in before laying the bouncing ball off to Seferovic. From a tight angle on the right, Seferovic fires the ball high and wide of goal. Mepham had an industrial chunk of Embolo's shirt in his hands throughout that and will be thankful Embolo didn't hit the deck and force a VAR review.
49’ CHANCE! Brilliant play from Embolo, as he spins away from Rodon 30 yards from goal and piles forwards. He gets into the area and his fierce shot is turned over by Ward.
49’ GOAL! Wales 0 Switzerland 1 (Embolo 49) It's been coming! Shaqiri whips in the corner and finally the delivery is perfect; Embolo overpowers Roberts and heads the ball in net at the back post.
65’ CLOSE! Shaqiri finds Embolo on the left of the Welsh area. He opens up to shoot and puts it just past the far post, with Ward at full stretch.
74’ GOAL! Wales 1 (Moore 74) Switzerland 1 Wales are level! It's another set piece, and Wales work it short to Morrell on the right corner of the area. He whips it into the area and Moore gets across the Swiss defence to glance a deft header into the bottom left corner!
85’ DISALLOWED GOAL! Gavranovic thought he'd won it! Some neat interplay from Switzerland on the edge of the area leads to Embolo nodding it through to Gavarnovic, who thumps in a volley from eight yards out. He's half a yard off though, and it's chalked.
Xherdan Shaqiri has either scored or directly assisted on half of Switzerland’s goals in the last three major international tournaments.