Switzerland boss unhappy with performance: 'This is not the way to go forward'
Switzerland trod a thin line between arrogance and confidence as they claimed the required point to advance to the next round of the World Cup, said coach Vladimir Petkovic after the 2-2 draw with Costa Rica on Wednesday.
The result ensured they finished second in Group E as Brazil beat Serbia 2-0 in the other group game played simultaneously.
"It's hard to say which side of the line we were on," Petkovic said after the match at the Nizhny Novgorod Stadium, "but the fact of the matter was that we turned over too much possession and lost too many one-on-one situations and so, when that happens, it all adds up.
"Because of that, it was a much different performance than what we saw against Brazil and Serbia."
Switzerland, who needed only a draw to progress to the knockout phase for the third time in the past four tournaments, found themselves under early pressure from already-eliminated Costa Rica before Blerim Dzemaili handed the Swiss the half-time lead.
Costa Rica hit the woodwork twice before finally equalising and kept creating chances as Switzerland failed to look anything like a side who had picked up four points from their opening two games.
Two more late goals gave both sides a deserved share of the spoils.
"Whenever we managed to attack previously, we were able to find each other with precise passing, aggressively moving into the zones. But we didn't get that right tonight," Petkovic added. "I don't think we need to overanalyse what went wrong, but it has to be taken very seriously, and we need to recognise this is not the way to go forward.
"I'm sure next game we'll be much better. I don't know why it didn't work well for us."
Finishing second behind Brazil means Switzerland now play Sweden in St. Petersburg on Tuesday in the second round.
"We have big ambitions, but our next big ambition is applied to the next opponent, and that is what counts now," Pekovic said.
"We are not thinking about making history or anything like that, just relaxing now and then making sure we beat Sweden," he said.
Yellow cards for captain Stephan Lichtsteiner and fellow defender Fabian Schär -- their second of the tournament -- mean they'll be suspended for the Sweden match in St. Petersburg.
"This is certainly not an ideal scenario," Dzemaili said. "We don't need to look at who's not there, we need to look at who will be able to play. This is very disappointing."