World Cup Play-Off: Controversial Penalty Puts Switzerland In Driving Seat Against Northern Ireland (Video)

Alan Duffy

9th, November 2017

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Northern Ireland’s hopes of making it to a World Cup finals for the first time since 1986 were dealt a major blow on Thursday, after losing to Switzerland at Windsor Park courtesy of a controversial penalty.

The Swiss, with Arsenal’s Granit Xhaka and Stoke’s Xherdan Shaqiri in the starting 11, were the better side from the off.

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The one and only goal of the game would come just before the hour-mark, albeit in very contentious circumstances.

Referee Ovidiu Hategan pointed to the spot after Corry Evans blocked a shot with his shoulder, a decision which enraged the home fans and the 18,000 fans at Windsor Park.

Milan full-back Ricardo Rodriguez converted the resulting spot-kick to put the visitors 1-0 up.

Michael O’Neill’s side pushed for an equaliser, with Josh Magennis going close late on via a headed effort from a Chris Brunt free-kick.

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The Swiss also had a number of chances to extend their lead but the game would end in a 1-0 win for the visitors, a victory which puts them in the driving seat ahead of the second leg.

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The two sides meet again in Basel on Sunday.

Posted in Videos, World Cup

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