Your Guide To SA 2010 : Switzerland


FIFA Ranking : 24
Switzerland will be appearing at a fourth successive major tournament since Euro 2004. Switzerland got knocked out in the second round in FIFA World Cup 2006 against Ukraine, via a penalty shootout. Their next major tournament was the Euro 2008 which was hosted by Switzerland and Austria. Sadly for the home fans, Switzerland got knocked out in the group stages. 2010 FIFA World Cup will be Switzerland's 9th World Cup appearance.

The Manager

Switzerland played in Group 2 of the UEFA Qualifying for the FIFA World Cup. They topped the group which also contained the likes of Greece, Isreal and Latvia. The only blip they suffered in the qualifying stages was their home loss to Luxembourg. The credit for all this should go to Ottmar Hitzfeld, their manager. The German was appointed coach after Jakob Kuhn left. Hitzfeld had perviously managed three Swiss clubs - FC Aurau and Grasshopper Zurich being among them.

The Squad


Diego Benaglio, Johnny Leoni, Marco Wolfli


Mario Eggimann, Stephane Grichting, Stephan Lichtsteiner, Philippe Senderos, Christoph Spycher, Steve Von Bergen, Reto Ziegler

Tranquillo Barnetta, Valon Behrami, Gelson Fernandes, Benjamin Huggel, Gokhan Inler, Marco Padalino, Pirmin Schwegler, Xherdan Shaqiri


Eren Derdiyok, Alexander Frei, Blaise Nkufo, Marco Streller, Hakan Yakin

Man To Watch:

Alexander Frei, the 30 year old striker, will be the man to watch for Switzerland's opponents. The Basel striker has scored 40 goals in 73 appearances for Switzerland. Frei is an ex-Top scorer of the French Ligue 1 in 2005 and he had a clinical record for German side Borussia Dortmund. Alexander Frei will be looking to score at the World Cup again, after scoring two goals in the last torunament. However, Frei will be looking for Gokhan Inler, the Udinese midfielder, to help him put the ball in the back of the net.

FP Verdict:
Switzerland are placed in Group H along with Spain, Honduras and Chile. Barring Spain, Switzerland could have a go at Honduras and Chile for qualification. However, complacency should be avoided by the Swiss to ensure that a repeat of Euro 2008 does not occur. Their pre-World Cup friendlies have shown indifferent form, with a loss against Costa Rica and a draw with Italy. The Swiss could have a hard time in the World Cup in they keep their current form, and their coach Ottmar Hitzfeld will be looking to make changes to his tactics.

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