Switzerland could have sealed a spot in Euro 2016’s knockout rounds on Wednesday, but an early penalty kick doomed the Swiss to a draw.
After conceding a first half penalty kick, Switzerland required a second half leveler from Admir Mehmedi to seal a 1-1 tie with Romania.
Against the run of play, Romania took the lead in the 18th minute through a penalty kick, their second of the young tournament. Following a foul from Stephan Lichtsteiner, Bogdan Stancu stepped up and fired past Yann Sommer to give Romania the 1-0 lead.
From there, Romania’s defense looked strong, limiting Switzerland to few positive attacking sequences. Finally, the Swiss broke through in the 57th minute just as Romania looked most comfortable.
On a corner kick, the ball was headed to the left side of the box and into the path of Mehmedi. The forward waited for the ball to bounce before unleashing a volley across goal and into the top right hand corner, as the thunderous shot prove un-savable as Switzerland equalized.
From that point forward, Switzerland emerged as the dominant side against a Romania sense that was much less stout. However, the Swiss could never truly break down the opposition despite having the better of the play en route to a 1-1 draw.
Switzerland, who sits on four points, returns to action on Sunday against France, while Romania takes on Albania that same day.
MAN OF THE MATCH
Recent Arsenal signing Granit Xhaka ran the Swiss midfield while helping his side battle back from an early deficit.
MOMENT OF THE MATCH
Admir Mehmedi’s thunderbolt of an equalizer earned the Swiss a share of the points while turning the tides in highlight-reel fashion.
MATCH TO FORGET
Swiss captain Stephan Lichtsteiner will be left frustrated after conceding a penalty, a mistake that proved costly on Wednesday afternoon.