Sweden has won its first opening match at the World Cup in 60 years after a 1-0 win over South Korea through an Andreas Granqvist's VAR-assisted penalty in the 65th minute of the match. 'If we win against Germany, we are through. There was no real flow to the match, as both teams committed too many fouls to allow any rhythm. They are able to take advantage of this and their physical condition.
Sweden dominated the first half but struggled to break through and needed VAR to come to the rescue when Hwang Hee-Chan brought down Viktor Claesson in the penalty area in the 63rd minute.
"From the position the referee had, he could have blown for the penalty straight away". Another late corner nearly led to a goal for the Swedes, but it was headed over the bar.
Although South Korea failed to get a promising result in the end, it was Jo who at least the kept the game a one-goal affair.
"The game against Saudi Arabia was actually a wake-up call". Sweden had a couple of earlier penalty shouts turned down, and they were fuming when it looked as if this would be as well.
FIFA World Cup 2018 Sweden v/s South Korea will be broadcast on Sony Ten 2, Sony Ten 2 HD, Sony ESPN, Sony ESPN HD in English Commentary and Sony Ten 3 and Sony 3 HD in Hindi Commentary.
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Swedish players were once again auditioning for the Dunkirk landing sequence from Saving Private Ryan as the slightest contact had them lying down gripping their legs and slapping the turf as if in agony in an attempt to waste valuable seconds - even with nearly half an hour of normal time left to play. A ball into the box was played back across goal, but the headed shot was wide.
Sweden reached Russian Federation by beating France in a group game on the way to finishing above the Netherlands in the table and reach the play-offs, when they overcame Italy. It defies rationality to think that having the LA Galaxy striker on the bench wouldn't have strengthened Sweden's chances.
Andersson will now shift his attention to the Germany game on June 23, where Sweden could potentially deal a fatal blow to the world champions' hopes of staying in the tournament.
"Because we were going up against a tall team, we wanted to negate some of the disadvantage in set pieces (by starting Kim)", Shin said. Sweden took important three points and got their campaign off to a flyer with an important victory.
It was the third VAR penalty awarded at these championships after France and Peru also benefitted from video referrals.The win was reward for Sweden's more attacking approach, but it was unsurprising the victor came from the penalty spot in a game between the two sides who had only managed two goals between them in seven games heading into Russian Federation.