A brace from Khvicha Kvaratskhelia earned Georgia a shock win and dented Sweden's qualification hopes.
Sweden started slowly before gradually asserting themselves, Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Alexander Isak both missing straightforward chances. But Georgia did not set up simply to survive, looking to counter at every opportunity, and it was they who came closer to scoring, Saba Lobzhanidze smacking a cross-shot that clipped the outside of Robin Olsen’s post.
Then, on 61 minutes, Sweden conceded a free-kick 30 yards out, which Tornike Okriashvili chipped in, and though Olsen saved from Irakli Azarov, Kvaratskhelia was on-hand to ram home the rebound.
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That ought to have initiated a Swedish onslaught, but the away side struggled to respond, and it was little surprise when Georgia scored again on 77 minutes, Kvaratskhelia finishing calmly after fighting past Victor Lindelof’s wimpish challenge. The performance came too late to affect their qualification prospects, but the speed and enterprise of their attacking augurs well for the future.
Sweden must now win in Spain, who won 1-0 in Greece to seize top spot, in their final group game to qualify automatically for Qatar. Anything else and it's the play-offs.

TALKING POINT - Bottle job 101

As a piece of early-evening excitement, this was a pretty decent game, and everyone loves a bottle job. But the reality remains that, if Spain win in Greece and get the point they would then need against Sweden, the Swedes would still fancy themselves to beat whoever they were drawn against in the play-offs.

MAN OF THE MATCH - Khvicha Kvaratskhelia (Georgia)

Two goals - one a scavenger's finish and one a more composed effort - amid a performance of general menace.

Khvicha Kvaratskhelia (Georgia)

Image credit: Getty Images


Georgia: Loria 7, Kakabadze 7, Kashia 7, Khocholava 6, Azarov 7, Kvekveskiri 6, Gvilia 5, Lobzhanidze 7, Kvaratskhelia 9, Tsitaishvili 6, Okriashvili 7. Subs: Davitashvili 6, Volokov 6, Qazaishvili 6, Chabradze 6, Aburjania 6.
Sweden: Olsen 6, Krafth 6, Lindelof 5, Nilsson 6, Augustinsson 6, Claesson 5, Olsson 5, Svanberg 5, Forsberg 5, Ibrahimovic 5, Isak 4. Subs: Kulusevski 6, Quaison 6, Karlsson 6.


14’ - Augstinsson goes down the line and cuts back for Forsberg, who's shot is blocked, then Loria parries from Zlatan! I thought that was 1-0; it should've been.

23’ - WHAT A MISS! Isak, just outsixde the box, curves a fine, delicate ball over from the left and Zlatan is in front of goal, having pulled off Kakabadze! This must be! But no! He caresses a gently header far too close to Loria, and what an oversight that is!

39’ - Georgia have had a good few minutes and here they come again, Azarov sliding a ball inside Krafth for Kvaratskhelia, but arriving at the back post, Lobzanidze can only ram a first-time effort that flicks the far post! What a chance that was!

57’ - Augustinsson crosses big from the left and Zltana does brilliantly to chest it back across, into Claesson's path. But from six yards, he can't quite drag the ball on target, sending it just wide of the near post.

61’ - GOAL! Georgia 1-0 Sweden (Kvaratskhelia): Well! Okrinashvili chips in, Kakabaze wins the flick-on, and though Olsen blocks Azarov's close-range shot, the ball squirts loose to Kvaratskhelia, who rams home! Sweden are in all sorts!

77’ - GOAL! Georgia 2-0 Sweden (Kvaratskhelia): He's done it again! Kvaratskhelia picks the ball up outside the box and fights through a wimp's tackle from Lindelof, draws the keeper, and slides a calm finish into the bottom left!
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