Italy in last 16 after win over Sweden – highlights & report

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Euro 2016: Italy 1-0 Sweden highlights

Italy are through to the last 16 of the European Championship finals after Eder struck late on to beat Sweden.

The game looked to be heading towards a dull goalless draw before Eder raced onto Zaza’s knockdown to drive home from outside the box.

Sweden failed to produce a shot on goal for the second successive game, with captain and star striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic kept quiet throughout.

Italy are top of Group E with six points while Sweden are third on one.

Hard to beat and clinical in attack

Eder<!–

Italy have scored three goals and conceded none in their two games so far

Prior to the tournament, Italy boss Antonio Conte had played down his side’s chances of success in France, citing an ageing squad and a lack of upcoming talent as reasons for fans to temper their expectations.

In their opening group game at Euro 2016, they caught they eye as they outfoxed tournament favourites Belgium with patient and well-organised football.

They found joy in that game by getting between the Belgian lines, quickly turning defence into attack against a side that – while packed with individual talent – looked disjointed.

Italy, though, had no such luck against a conservative Sweden side, who were content to sit deep.

For 88 minutes, the tactic worked but this Italy side is built upon a foundation of being defensively solid and clinical in attack.

That latter quality was illustrated when Eder scored with only Italy’s second shot on target in the closing stages, driving brilliantly into the left corner of Andreas Isaksson’s net.

Zlatan struggles to make an impact

Zlatan Ibrahimovic<!–

Zlatan Ibrahimovic has scored six goals in 12 games for Sweden, but failed to make much impact against Italy

Ibrahimovic is well versed in the defensive style of football Italy is famed for, having spent seven seasons in Serie A playing for Juventus, Milan and Inter.

But prior to Friday’s game, Ibrahimovic had faced the Azzurri just once before – at Euro 2004.

He scored with an outrageous flick late in that game, denying Italy a victory that ultimately cost them a place in knockout stages.

It would have taken another piece of individual brilliance for him to score against Italy again, as Sweden’s lack of creativity offered him little to work with, a scenario that often saw him dropping deep in order to build an attack.

The former Paris St-Germain forward did balloon a shot over from three yards out but his blushes were spared by the offside flag.

A second game without a goal for Ibrahimovic means his wait to become the first player to score in four European Championships goes on.

If the Swedes don’t show significant improvement in attack in their final group game against Belgium, it is a feat he may never achieve.

More to follow

Live Text

Match ends, Italy 1, Sweden 0.

Second Half ends, Italy 1, Sweden 0.

Foul by Erik Johansson (Sweden).

Giorgio Chiellini (Italy) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Victor Lindelöf (Sweden) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Stefano Sturaro (Italy).

Martin Olsson (Sweden) is shown the yellow card.

Gianluigi Buffon (Italy) is shown the yellow card.

Foul by Andreas Granqvist (Sweden).

Giorgio Chiellini (Italy) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Andreas Granqvist (Sweden) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Simone Zaza (Italy).

Corner, Italy. Conceded by Andreas Granqvist.

Corner, Italy. Conceded by Martin Olsson.

Corner, Italy. Conceded by Andreas Isaksson.

Attempt saved. Antonio Candreva (Italy) right footed shot from the right side of the box is saved in the top right corner. Assisted by Thiago Motta.

Attempt blocked. Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Sweden) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked. Assisted by Kim Källström.

Goal! Italy 1, Sweden 0. Éder (Italy) right footed shot from the centre of the box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Simone Zaza with a headed pass.

Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Sweden) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Thiago Motta (Italy).

Foul by Kim Källström (Sweden).

Marco Parolo (Italy) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

Substitution, Sweden. Marcus Berg replaces John Guidetti.

Substitution, Italy. Stefano Sturaro replaces Alessandro Florenzi.

Foul by Andreas Granqvist (Sweden).

Andrea Barzagli (Italy) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Corner, Sweden. Conceded by Marco Parolo.

Marco Parolo (Italy) hits the bar with a header from the centre of the box. Assisted by Emanuele Giaccherini with a cross.

Attempt missed. Jimmy Durmaz (Sweden) left footed shot from outside the box misses to the right. Assisted by John Guidetti.

Substitution, Sweden. Oscar Lewicki replaces Albin Ekdal.

Substitution, Sweden. Jimmy Durmaz replaces Emil Forsberg.

Delay over. They are ready to continue.

Delay in match (Sweden).

Foul by Sebastian Larsson (Sweden).

Giorgio Chiellini (Italy) wins a free kick on the left wing.

Attempt missed. Antonio Candreva (Italy) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the left.

Substitution, Italy. Thiago Motta replaces Daniele De Rossi.

Andreas Granqvist (Sweden) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

Foul by Daniele De Rossi (Italy).

Corner, Italy. Conceded by Kim Källström.

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