World Cup: Chicago Fire’s Xherdan Shaqiri guides Switzerland's win over Cameroon 


Xherdan Shaqiri’s Switzerland kicked off Group G play of the 2022 FIFA World Cup with a 1-0 win over Cameroon on Thursday.

The Chicago Fire Designated Player was once again a key figure for the European side as he recorded his first assist of the tournament. Shaqiri made a one-time pass from the right to find Breel Embolo, who fired from close range to put the Rossocrociati up in the 48th minute.

The 31-year-old veteran, who is playing in his fourth World Cup, put on a solid shift through 72 minutes against the African side. He has provided an assist in each of the team’s last four major tournaments, including the 2016 and 2020 Euros and the 2018 and 2022 World Cups.

Shaqiri joined the Fire last winter via a reported $7.5 million transfer fee from Ligue 1’s Lyon, a record signing for the MLS club. He had a team-leading 18 goal contributions (7g/11a) in 29 matches under manager Ezra Hendrickson. Despite his form, the Fire missed the Audi MLS Cup Playoffs for a fifth consecutive year.

Seattle Sounders’ star defender Nouhou also featured in the Group G match for Cameroon, playing the full 90 minutes, while Philadelphia Union defender Olivier Mbaizo was an unused sub for the Indomitable Lions.

Both teams will play their respective second Group G matches on Monday with Cameroon meeting Serbia and Switzerland facing tournament favorite Brazil.