Italy advance to last 16
TOULOUSE, France (AP):
Eder's late goal gave Italy a 1-0 win over Sweden yesterday and a spot in the round of 16 at the European Championship as Italy's defence once again stood tall.
The Brazilian-born striker curled the ball into the bottom right corner in the 88th minute after substitute Simone Zaza headed on a long throw-in from Giorgio Chiellini.
"It was a great goal," Eder said. "It reminds me of my first goal for Italy. It was in the qualifying stages against Bulgaria. I dummied and the ball went in and I'm delighted."
Italy opened the tournament with a 2-0 win over Belgium. Now with six points, they are assured of a spot in the next round no matter what happens in the team's final Group E match against Ireland on Wednesday in Lille.
Italy had few chances throughout the match, although they threatened minutes before Eder's goal when Marco Parolo headed Emanuele Giaccherini's cross off the crossbar.
Sweden striker Zlatan Ibrahimovic was once again kept quiet. Whenever Ibrahimovic had the ball in the middle, Italian defenders swarmed around him.