Soccer-Magic Isak inspires Sweden to 2-0 win over Greece

World Cup - UEFA Qualifiers - Group B - Sweden v Greece
Soccer Football - World Cup - UEFA Qualifiers - Group B - Sweden v Greece - Friends Arena, Stockholm, Sweden - October 12, 2021 Greece's Anastasios Bakasetas in action with Sweden's Emil Forsberg Anders Wiklund/TT News Agency via REUTERS

October 12, 2021

By Philip O’Connor

STOCKHOLM (Reuters) – Alexander Isak won a penalty that was converted by Emil Forsberg before scoring himself as Sweden beat Greece 2-0 on Tuesday to move to the top of World Cup qualifying Group B on 15 points, two ahead of Spain with two games left to play.

Things did not start well for Swedes, who had the assistant referee and the woodwork to thank in the first half as an early goal by Giorgos Masouras was ruled out for offside and he also hit a post while Vangelis Pavlidis headed off the crossbar just before the break.

Isak was felled in the box by Konstantinos Mavropanos and Forsberg rattled the resulting spot kick low to the left for his second penalty in two games.

Isak added the second in the 69th minute, exploiting a hesitant Greek defence to latch onto a long ball by keeper Robin Olsen before rounding the keeper and calmly chipping the ball home.

Greece found themselves down to 10 men in the 86th minute when Pantelis Hatzidiakos was shown a second yellow card, snuffing out any chance they might have had of making a late comeback.

The Swedes are away to Georgia on Nov. 11, while the Spaniards take on Greece in Athens before the two group leaders meet three days later.

(Reporting by Philip O’Connor, editing by Pritha Sarkar)