FC Zurich draw Neuchâtel Xamax 1:1
Tonight’s game between FC Zurich and Neuchâtel Xamax, currently ranked second in the Challenge League table, has ended in a 1:1 draw.
From kick-off, FC Zurich were the more active side on the pitch and had a couple of promising scoring opportunities. Only four minutes in, newly signed Ghanaian striker Raphael Dwamena just missed a cross by Marco Schönbächler and two minutes later, a Alain Nef missed Roberto Rodriguez‘ square pass by a couple of inches.
On eight minutes, FC Zurich were then rewarded for their efforts: Raphael Dwamena came out on top of his opponent on the left and kept the overview. His cross found the foot of Oliver Buff in the middle, who beat Xamax keeper Laurent Walthert without any problems, opening the score 1:0 for the home side.
When Charles-André Doudin protested a little too vehemently in the 14th minute, referee Alain Bieri showed him the red card and sent him off. Despite several good opportunities, FC Zurich were unfortunately not able to take advantage of their numerical superiority on the pitch. Also, they were rather unlucky when a shot by Dwamena on 33 minutes was deflected off target by Rodriguez.
After the half-time break, the visitors from Neuchâtel began to play more offensively. Nevertheless, FC Zurich still had the better chances to double their lead – the best one by Antonio Marchesano on 70 minutes, but his free-kick bounced off the post. With their very next attack, Xamax Neuchâtel then equalized the score, though, as Raphaël Nuzzolo beat Zurich keeper Andris Vanins after a counter-attack.
With this draw, FC Zurich’s advantage against Neuchâtel Xamax in the Challenge League table remains at nine points. Next Saturday, 18 February 2017, FC Zurich will be facing FC Wil away (kick- off 5.45pm).