Honduras vs Switzerland World Cup 2014 match report: Xherdan Shaqiri hat-trick hands Switzerland date with Argentina

Honduras 0 Switzerland 3

The brilliance of Xherdan Shaqiri sent Switzerland through to the knockout stages of the World Cup where they will face the might of Argentina.

The Bayern Munich midfielder’s hat-trick ensured that a former Bayern manager, Ottmar Hitzfeld, will not be retiring just yet. They had to better Ecuador’s result against France to guarantee qualification and justify their remarkable status as one of the World Cup’s seeded teams.

Once Shaqiri had put away the night’s second goal against a Honduran team that had managed just one in 569 minutes of World Cup football, Swiss thoughts would have turned to Rio. France did not let them down.

But Honduras showed considerable spirit after the interval with Ricardo Rodriguez clearing off the line from Jerry Bengtson and they ought to have had a penalty when Jerry Palacios was brought down. It was nowhere near enough.

Four years ago, Honduras had forced a goalless draw with the Swiss to ensure that they and Hitzfeld failed to qualify for the business phase of the South African World Cup, despite beginning it with a victory over Spain.

They had started this one with a last-minute victory over Ecuador but a 5-2 thrashing by France meant they had to win in Manaus and from the moment, six minutes in, that Shaqiri drove his shot past Javier Valladares from 25 yards, any nerves the Swiss might have had were soothed.

Their fate in the last two tournaments, in Germany and four years later in South Africa, was sealed by a lack of goals. When, just after the half-hour mark, Shaqiri ran on to a beautifully-measured pass from Josip Drmic it meant Switzerland had now scored more in their three group games than they had in their last nine World Cup matches over three tournaments.

Shaqiri’s third, again provided by Drmic, was the 50th hat-trick in the competition and over in Rio, it meant an Ecuador side already down to 10 men would have to score twice. Hitzfeld could start planning for something altogether more challenging – how to tame Lionel Messi.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine
Letterman's final Late Show: Laughter, but no tears, as David takes his bow after 33 years

Laughter, but no tears, as Letterman takes his bow after 33 years

Veteran talkshow host steps down to plaudits from four presidents
Ivor Novello Awards 2015: Hozier wins with anti-Catholic song 'Take Me To Church' as John Whittingdale leads praise for Black Sabbath

Hozier's 'blasphemous' song takes Novello award

Singer joins Ed Sheeran and Clean Bandit in celebration of the best in British and Irish music
Tequila gold rush: The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product

Join the tequila gold rush

The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product
12 best statement wallpapers

12 best statement wallpapers

Make an impact and transform a room with a conversation-starting pattern
Paul Scholes column: Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?

Paul Scholes column

Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?