Switzerland defeats holders Italy to reach UEFA Euro 2024 quarterfinals

In a major upset, Switzerland knocked out Euro 2020 champions Italy 2-0 in their last-16 match in Berlin.

Footballer cleebrates goal.
Ruben Vargas celebrates scoring their second goal against Italy at the Euro 2024 round of 16, Berlin Olympiastadion, Germany, June 29, 2024 [Lee Smith/Reuters]

Switzerland dumped reigning champions Italy out of Euro 2024 with a stunning 2-0 victory to reach the quarterfinals for the second time in their history.

Murat Yakin’s supremely well-drilled side outplayed the flat two-time winners in the last 16 clash in Berlin on Saturday and will face England or Slovakia in the next round.

Ruben Vargas teed up Remo Freuler for Switzerland’s 37th-minute opener before curling home superbly himself right at the start of the second half to deservedly double their lead.

Footballer kicks goal.
Switzerland’s Ruben Vargas scores their second goal in the 46th minute against Italy [Lisi Niesner/Reuters]

A new-look Italy, short on star power and without many of the key figures that led them to Euro 2020 glory, offered little in response to Switzerland’s energetic display.

“It hurts, it really hurts,” said Italy’s captain and goalkeeper Gianluigi Donnarumma.

“We can only say sorry to everyone, we were disappointing today and they deserved to win. We struggled all game long.”

Former Arsenal midfielder Granit Xhaka, arriving at the Euros after a stunning season with German champions Bayer Leverkusen, pulled the strings as the Swiss rarely looked like letting the lead slip away.

“I’m at a loss for words. It was the most important game of my career,” said Swiss midfielder Fabian Rieder.

“Everyone played for each other, we worked well in defence and attack… we have an incredibly great team.

“We want to enjoy the moment now but keep working hard for the next game.”

Source: News Agencies