Embolo scores winner against birth nation Cameroon to earn Switzerland crucial victory

Embolo scores winner against birth nation Cameroon to earn Switzerland crucial victory
Breel Embolo refused to celebrate after scoring against his birth nation
Breel Embolo refused to celebrate after scoring against his birth nation
AFP, StatsPerform
Breel Embolo's close range strike at the start of the second half was enough to earn Switzerland a crucial 1-0 victory in Group G over an enterprising Cameroon. The striker, born in Cameroon, refused to celebrate after scoring out of respect for the nation of his birth.

Full Time: Switzerland 1 Cameroon 0

12:57 CET: Breel Embolo will be the hero in Switzerland after his goal has won them a hard-fought three points over Cameroon. Both sides will know how important that result is given the strength of their other opponents in Group G, Brazil and Serbia, who play at 20:00 CET.

Check out our full report from the game, written by Danny Clark, and the match stats, which show that this game could have gone either way. But it is Switzerland who go top of Group G.

Full Time Statistics

Second Half

12:55 CET: Haris Seferovic should wrap the game up as he has a shot from around eight yards out one-on-one with Onana, but a great block denies him. That should be it.

12:53 CET: A late corner for Switzerland and they play it short. Game management strategy employed.

12:49 CET: Ricardo Rodriguez is another player to come off. In place of him comes Eray Comert. We will have six minutes of added time to finish the game, can Cameroon find a late leveller?

12:47 CET: Edging ever close to the 90th minute at Al Janoub Stadium, and Cameroon really don't look like scoring after changing their whole forward line. Instead its Switzerland who are controlling the game well. Xhaka takes fly from the edge of the box, but Onana is down well to stop the fierce shot.

12:44 CET: Akanji in the book for a tackle from behind. He won't mind as it broke up what could have been a swift counter for Cameroon. Both centre halves now have yellow cards for Switzerland.

12:40 CET: A wonderful cross-field ball sets Collins Fai away down the right wing, and his cross looks dangerous but it floats out for a goal kick. Time running out for Cameroon as both sides make more changes. For the Swiss, Ruben Vargas comes off for Fabian Rieder and for the Lions, Bryan Mbuemo is replaced by Nicolas Moumi Ngamaleu. 

12:36 CET: Switzerland are doing a great job in frustrating Cameroon with their low block and they are withstanding the pressure with ease. Less than 15 minutes left of normal time in this one remains.

12:34 CET: The changes keep on coming, this time Eric Choupo-Moting and Karl Toko Ekambi are replaced by Vincent Aboubakar and Georges-Kevin N'Koudou. 

12:31 CET: A triple substitution for Switzerland after a wasted corner - Djibril Sow, goalscorer Breel Embolo and Xherdan Shaqiri all depart with Haris Seferovic, Noah Okafor and Fabian Frei all coming on to the pitch. It looks like straight swaps for the Swiss.

12:28 CET: Here is that first change for Cameroon - Gael Ondoua, who plies his trade with Hannover, is on for Martin Hongla. 

12:28 CET: Looks like there is a change in the offing for the Indomitable Lions, but first a free kick that is struck firmly but saved by Sommer. That sets Switzerland away and Andre Onana magnificently denies Ruben Vargas from close range. Then, from the corner, Anguissa does brilliantly to divert the ball away for another one. If he had not got a touch on that, Breel Embolo was sure to score his second of the game. A breathless passage of play.

12:20 CET: An hour gone in this Group G clash, and Switzerland have gone into a compact shape to keep their 1-0 lead - an approach that is allowing Cameroon more time on the ball. At the moment though, they can't get through.

12:16 CET: Choupo-Moting is starting to show his talent up top for Cameroon. He skips past two challenges and gets into the box, but the angle for his shot is too narrow and easily saved by Sommer.

12:11 CET: That was Switzerland's first shot on target in the match, and it would have been harder for Embolo to miss from there. Cameroon will have to regroup now, and they will get a chance as Granit Xhaka goes down after a late challenge.

12:07 CET: GOAL FOR EMBOLO! Switzerland take the lead!

What happened there Cameroon? Xherdan Shaqiri crosses the ball from the right and the defence freezes, allowing Embolo the simplest of finishes. He does not celebrate out of respect for his birth nation, but that is a huge goal for a side that have struggled to implement themselves in this game so far.

12:05 CET: We are back under way at Al Janoub Stadium.

Half Time

11:51 CET: Here are the stats from the first 45 minutes of this Group G opener. As we have said throughout, an even game, with Cameroon showing more attacking threat.

First Half Statistics

11:48 CET: And that is half time at Al Janoub Stadium. The Cameroons will feel they have been on top for much of it as Switzerland have struggled to impose themselves in this game. A change in their shape to add another man into midfield may be useful in the second half.

First Half

11:46 CET: Akanji, oh no! He has a free header from a corner no more than three yards out, but he can't het anything on the effort and it goes wide. Switzerland's biggest chance of the game so far is wasted.

11:42 CET: Choupo-Moting looks to be in a great position to shoot, but sees it blocked. The resulting corner sees the African side keep the ball nicely once again, but they are unable to break through with a killer pass. Two minutes to go before half-time.

11:40 CET: Breel Embolo finally finds some space, but a great challenge from Castelletto prevents a shot. On a couple of occassions now, the Cameroon defenders have got back in and recovered well to make those type of challenges - both perfectly executed.

11:38 CET: Less than 10 munutes to go in the first half and it's Cameroon who look dangerous. Their front three have caused Switzerland problems throughout the half and their compact defence has kept Switzerland quiet throughout. For qualification to the next round, this game is pivotal for both sides. There will be a lot to ponder at half-time for the Swiss coaching staff.

11:34 CET: The first booking of the game is shown to Collins Fai for a bit of a reckless challenge. 

11:30 CET: Another lovely move from Cameroon, this time down the right, which forces Yann Sommer into a save that he can't divert away from the box. His defence are on hand to deal with it, but these are nervy times for the Swiss.

11:27 CET: Cameroon are now finding their feet in this contest, with some nice, crisp passing. Collins Fai tries his luck from range but the shot is wayward. Momentum building for the African side.

11:25 CET: A flowing move from Cameroon forces a corner, but the outswinging delivery is over everyone and the attack fizzles out.

11:21 CET: A pretty even game so far with Switzerland having the majority of the ball, but they are yet to get Breel Embolo into the game. Their striker was born in Cameroon in what will be a huge day for the Monaco forward.

11:15 CET: Eric Choupo-Moting finds space down the left again and looks ready to pull the trigger when one-on-one with Sommer, but Manuel Akanji does brilliantly to ease the striker off the ball and prevent the shot. THe game is opening up a little here after 15 minutes.

11:13 CET: At the other end, Granit Xhaka - a fan of the long shot - does just that, but hits it high and wide. He then gives his forwards a stern word for their lack of movement.

11:11 CET: Rather ominously, this game has huge Croatia v Morocco vibes from yesterday, but as we type, Cameroon want to prove that wrong, breaking down the left, forcing Yann Sommer into a save before Karl Toko Ekambi fires just over the bar. The best chance of the game so far.

11:06 CET: A quiet start to this game, but Switzerland are probing down their right with Xherdan Shaqiri. He has delivered a couple of crosses that are yet to find their target. Cameroon will have to be careful with him today.

11:00 CET: Facundo Tello will be today's referee from Argentina and he gets the game in under way.


10:54 CET: Both sides are in the tunnel at Al Janoub Stadium, we're all set for Day Five of the World Cup.

10:48 CET: Remember we have live audio commentary starting very soon from this game - and every game of the World Cup - something you can find in the match summary. It will be starting up at 10:55 CET. 

Team News

Familiar faces line up for Switzerland with the veterans Yann Sommer and Ricardo Rodriguez in a backline that also includes Manchester City's Manuel Akanji. There is also starting berths for Granit Xhaka and Xherdan Shaqiri, whilst Cameroon-born Breel Embolo gets the nod up top instead of Haris Seferovic. 

For Cameroon, their potent front three of Bryan Mbuemo, Eric Choupo-Moting and Karl Toko Ekambi will be a match for any side. Behind them Andre Anguissa starts in midfield.

Switzerland XI: Yann Sommer, Ricardo Rodriguez, Nico Elvedi, Manuel Akanji, Silvan Widmer, Granit Xhaka (C), Remo Freuler, Ruben Vargas, Djibril Sow, Xherdan Shaqiri, Breel Embolo

Cameroon XI: Andre Onana, Nouhou Tolo, Nicolas N'Koulou, Jean-Charles Castelletto, Collins Fai, Samuel Oum Gouet, Andre Zambo Anguissa, Martin Hongla, Karl Toko Ekambi, Bryan Mbuemo, Eric Choupo-Moting


Murat Yakin, Switzerland's manager has called his team the 'best ever' to go to a World Cup and they face - on paper at least - their easiest opposition in Cameroon at 11:00 CET on Thursday morning. But, Cameroon - the only African team to make a World Cup quarter final - will be no pushover.

Their manager Rigobert Song has been blessed with a smooth run-in to the tournament and he has the supreme backing of the FA's president Samuel Eto'o, who has predicted his countrymen to win the tournament.

Follow all the action with us right here and from 10:55 CET, we will have live audio commentary for you to enjoy.