Switzerland citizens and fans are eager to see their team exceed their expectations in this year’s World Cup tournament. The team has been placed in the same group with the South American all-time football giants, Brazil and Costa Rica. These two are seemingly the toughest that Switzerland has to tackle in order to get through the group stages. Serbia, which is the fourth team in the group, will perhaps not be problematic to beat.
Switzerland is positioned in the sixth place by FIFA ranking. The team’s world cup prospects are currently one of the hardest to predict. However, only time will tell! Their first match will be against Brazil on 17th June at the Rostov-On-Don. This will surely be a hard one for the Swiss but they must strive to make something out of it despite odds being highly against them. Coach Vladimir Petkovic is confident that there will be no limit to the team’s potential after qualifying in November last year.
The Swiss national team qualified for Russia 2018 after a 1-0 aggregate playoff win against Northern Ireland. This saw Switzerland finish second in Europe’s Group B to wrap up their fourth successive appearance at the World Cup tournament.
In March this year, the team had two friendly matches in preparation for the world cup. The first was against Morocco where they lost 2-1. Additionally, they met Nigeria and thrashed them 2-0.
Coach Vladimir has confirmed that the team will not play any other warm-up matches before the World Cup. In a nutshell, the Swiss national team appears good enough to deliver this time, but it will not be easy.
The Stoke City winger, Xherdan Shaqiri, is the man that Vladimir will look forward to utilizing in all the teams’ matches. He assisted five goals in the Swiss’ qualifying campaign.
The 20-year-old Basel forward, Dimitri Oberlin will be in the Swiss team heading to Russia. Currently, he is on loan from RB Salzburg. Notably, he must have earned his first call-up after impressing for the Swiss side in March.
The History of Switzerland at the World Cup
Switzerland has made 10 appearances in the World Cup tournament since its inception. In 2006, the team became the first to exit the tournament without conceding a goal. On the other hand, the 3-0 loss on penalties against Ukraine also made history as the Swiss became the first team not to score in a shootout during a world cup match.
The best World Cup moment for the team was the 1-0 victory against Spain in 2010. This stunned the world!
Best: Quarter final appearances in 1954, 1938 & 1934.