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Federation Internationale de Football Association investigates Serbian FA head, coach, Swiss players

26 June, 2018, 02:22 | Author: John Swanson
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The football governing body has also reportedly begun a probe into supposed comments made by Serbia coach Mladen Krstajic after the controversial World Cup encounter, as well as against the Serbia FA for potential "crowd disturbance and the display of political and offensive messages", according to the Guardian.

After falling behind in the fifth minute, Switzerland defied a cauldron-like atmosphere created by fervent Serbian supporters as they hit back with a thunderbolt from Xhaka and a last-minute breakaway goal from Shaqiri.

Switzerland trio Granit Xhaka, Xherdan Shaqiri and Stephan Lichtsteiner have avoided bans from Federation Internationale de Football Association after being investigated for their celebrations against Serbia.

The two players, Xherdan Shaqiri and Granit Xhaka, made a gesture that evokes the double-headed eagle of the Albanian flag after scoring goals in the match in the Russian city of Kaliningrad.

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Despite being recognised by UEFA, Serbia does not acknowledge Kosovo as an independent state, with relations between the Balkan nations remaining tense.

Xhaka and Shaqiri, both articulate and multi-lingual, wear their hearts on their sleeve and have never been shy about their heritage.

Switzerland and Serbia can both still qualify for the last 16 of the World Cup.

This is seen in Serbia as promoting the idea of a Greater Albania - a project that would see Albania's borders expanded to include parts of Serbia, Macedonia, Montenegro, and Greece.

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Both the Switzerland and Serbia teams played down any political factors before the game last Friday. The gesture was for everyone who has supported me, it was not aimed at our opponents.

The Serbian press meanwhile called Shaqiri's goal celebration "shameful provocation".

Kosovo is a former Serbian province whose 2008 declaration of independence is not recognized by Serbia, leading to ongoing friction between the Balkan neighbours.

"I have no doubt that you can feel patriotic emotions for the land which has taken you in without forgetting your roots", he said.

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Serbian striker Aleksandar Mitrovic ripped Shaqiri, saying, "If he loves Kosovo so much and decides to flaunt the flag, why did he refuse a chance to play for their team?" "They [players] used to be Kosovo Albanian refugees", he said on Twitter.

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