Both players celebrated with the gesture of the double eagle, which appears on the national flag of Albania - a country with which Serbia has a turbulent and troubled past.

By 90Min
June 24, 2018

FIFA are investigating the goal celebrations of Granit Xhaka and Xherdan Shaqiri in Switzerland's 2-1 win over Serbia on Friday.

Both players celebrated with the gesture of the double eagle, which appears on the national flag of Albania - a country with which Serbia has a turbulent and troubled past.

Serbia refuses to recognize the independence of its former province Kosovo, which consists mostly of ethnic Albanians.

Shaqiri and Xhaka are both ethnic Albanians and Shaqiri was born in the Kosovan city of Gjilan. Both their families sought sanctuary in Switzerland during the Yugoslav Wars of Independence, when many ethnic Albanians were persecuted, imprisoned and killed.

Xhaka's father was a political prisoner during this time, but both he and Shaqiri denied that their celebrations were intended as provocation towards Serbia fans.

"For me it was a really special day," said Xhaka, quoted by Reuters. "This is a victory for my family, for Switzerland, Albania, Kosovo. The gesture was for everyone who has supported me; it was not aimed at our opponents. It was a really emotional game."

“It’s nothing to do with politics, it’s about football," added Shaqiri.

If found guilty, both players could face two-match bans which would rule them out of Switzerland's final group match against Costa Rica on Wednesday, and a possible last 16 match.

FIFA has also opened disciplinary proceedings against the Serbian FA for crowd disturbance and the display of political and offensive messages by Serbian fans.

Serbia manager Mladen Krstajic is under investigation for suggesting that referee Felix Brych should be put on trial in The Hague, the Dutch city where tribunals are held for war crimes.

Brych denied Aleksandar Kolorov a stonewall penalty with the scores level at 1-1.

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HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)