In Brief: Friday 25 June

Switzerland were unable to build on their shock defeat of Spain in the opening round of group H fixtures, held 0-0 by a Honduras side who were already eliminated.

A two-goal win would have been enough to see the Swiss secure qualification for the second round but this is not a side that are naturally inclined to go on the attack. The win over Spain was achieved through dogged defence and luck on the break, and it is perhaps not surprising that Switzerland were unable to break the deadlock.

Honduras might even have won it as Switzerland began to leave gaps at the back in the second half, Diego Benaglio producing a stunning save to deny Edgar Alvarez. A goalless draw was a fair result and few will miss Switzerland’s defensive displays in the knockout stages.

In Group G, Ivory Coast went into their final match needing to beat Ivory Coast and for Brazil to beat Portugal with a ten-goal swing in their favour. It was not to be, Portugal and Brazil playing out a convenient but drab goalless draw, and Ivory Coast only able to win 3-0.

Hopes were raised with two goals in the first twenty minutes, Yaya Touré with a cool finish into the bottom corner, then Romaric headed home the rebound after Didier Drogba had volleyed against the crossbar.

North Korea, though, were not about to roll over and accept another huge defeat after the 7-0 hammering by Portugal, and shut up shop effectively. Substitute Salomon Kalou added a third late on but it was not enough. Ivory Coast head home and Sven Goran-Eriksson moves on to whichever club or nation is daft enough to still consider him a top class manager despite the plethora of overwhelming evidence to the contrary.

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This entry was posted in Group G, Group H, Honduras, Ivory Coast, Match Reports, North Korea, Switzerland, World Cup 2010. Bookmark the permalink.

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