Spain edge Switzerland on penalties to seal Euro 2020 semi spot

You are currently viewing Spain edge Switzerland on penalties to seal Euro 2020 semi spot
Spain players celebrate progression to the Euro 2020 semis
  • Post published:July 2, 2021

Spain couldn’t get past a Yann Sommer-inspired 10-man Switzerland over 120 minutes and needed a penalty shootout to book their place in the Euro 2020 semi-finals.

The Swiss shocked the world by knocking out world champions France but still Spain were pegged as favourites heading into the game. They got off to a perfect start as Jordi Alba hit a venomous volley from the edge of the area which flew past Sommer with the aid of a huge deflection from Denis Zakaria, who was ultimately credited with the own goal.

In a tight game, both teams were struggling to create chances as Luis Enrique’s men held a 1-0 lead heading into the break.

The Swiss were much improved in the second half and got the goal they deserved following a huge mix-up between Aymeric Laporte and Pau Torres at the back, allowing the ball to be quickly squared across the box by Remo Freuler for Xherdan Shaqiri to tuck away the equaliser.

But their task was made much harder when Freluer was shown a straight red card for a challenge which seemed very unfair on the Atalanta star.

In extra time, the game belonged to Sommer, who turned in an exceptional performance to deny Spain time after time, although he was helped a little by Gerard Moreno’s misfiring, having shot wide with the goal gaping to ensure it went to penalties.

After winning in a shootout in the previous round, Switzerland couldn’t repeat the feat as defenders Fabian Schär and Manuel Akanji were denied by Unai Simón before Ruben Vargas blasted over, setting La Roja up for a 3-1 win from the spot.