Nov 9, 2017 at 7.45pm UK at ​Windsor Park
Attendance: 18,269
Northern Ireland

Evans (57')
FT(HT: 0-0)
Rodriguez (58' pen.)
Schar (5')

Xherdan Shaqiri: 'Switzerland worthy winners against Northern Ireland'

Shaqiri: 'Switzerland deserved to beat NI'
© SilverHub
Xherdan Shaqiri does not know whether Switzerland deserved to win a penalty against Northern Ireland but believes that his side were worthy of their victory at Windsor Park.

Xherdan Shaqiri has admitted that he does not know whether Switzerland deserved to win a penalty against Northern Ireland but believes his side were worthy of their World Cup playoff first-leg victory at Windsor Park.

Ricardo Rodriguez scored from the spot just before the hour mark after Corry Evans was deemed to have handled inside the area, although Shaqiri's shot appeared to hit the defender on the shoulder.

The penalty proved crucial for the Swiss as they claimed a 1-0 victory in Belfast, and Shaqiri insists that his team played "much better" than their opponents.

"I don't know if it was a penalty or not," the 26-year-old told reporters. "I tried to get a shot on target and I don't know if he touched it with his hand or not. In the end the referee gave the penalty. That is football.

"We controlled the game over 90 minutes, had a lot of possession and created chances. We played much better than Northern Ireland and deserved to win.

"It is, for us, the best result to get. We knew it would be difficult. They have their own fans behind them. We are looking forward to Basel, the second leg and trying to win again to reach the World Cup."

Switzerland have now won 10 of their last 11 competitive games, with the exception being last month's loss to Portugal which forced them into the playoff.

Northern Ireland manager Michael O'Neill at the BBC Sports Personality of the Year awards 2015.
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