Xhaka curled the ball through traffic to tie the game at 1-1, and Ivanovic suddenly became a very unpopular man on social media.
Xhaka and Shaqiri are among several members of the Swiss squad who are of Kosovar heritage, which added an extra dimension to the match.
The 34-year-old full-back is set to become the player with the most World Cup appearances for Switzerland, having equalled Charles Antenen's mark of eight matches in the draw with Brazil.
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The Sevilla player highlighted Spain-based midfield duo Luka Modric and Ivan Rakitic as the dangermen for Zlatko Dalic's side. Giovani Lo Celso, Ever Banega and Enzo Perez are also possibilities.
But the best of the drama was saved until the 90th minute, when Serbian defender Dusko Tosic made a massive error - stepping up in his own half to leave Xherdan Shaqiri through on goal, the Stoke man racing through on goal and finishing calmly to give his side the victor to an epic encounter.
Kolarov, whose stunning free-kick saw off Costa Rica, stressed Serbia will maintain its intensity when the Balkan nation faces Switzerland in Kaliningrad on Friday. "In football you always have emotions". "You can see what I did and I think it's just emotion".
Shaqiri was born in Kosovo, the former Serbian province that declared independence in 2008.
The gesture is likely to inflame tensions among Serb nationalists and ethnic Albanians.
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Switzerland captain Stephan Lichtsteiner came to the defense of Shaqiri and team-mate Granit Xhaka, but head coach Vladimir Petkovic declined the opportunity to discuss political matters surrounding the fixture.
"I hope that people will take notice of us and take us seriously". Serbia doesn't recognize Kosovo's independence and relations between the two countries remain tense.
Xhaka, whose 52rd-minute piledriver set up the Swiss comeback, also made the "double eagle" gesture after his goal. The hard-working striker (and goal-scorer) Aleksandar Mitrovic disrupted Switzerland's build-up play, and Nemanja Matic orchestrated the game while protecting the battle-hardened back four.
"You should never mix politics and football, it's good to be a fan and important to show respect", he told reporters after the game. "It's a wonderful atmosphere and a positive experience and that's what football should be about". Switzerland were terrific against Brazil and deserved their point - what they lack up front they more than make up for in the unyielding qualities of their midfield.
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