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World Cup: Switzerland team profile

Switzerland have become World Cup staples in recent times and now the challenge for them will be to try and reach the latter stages of the competition in Qatar.

They impressively qualified for the tournament when finishing above European champions Italy to top Group C and now the perennial "dark horses" of international football will head to Qatar to try and make their mark.

Switzerland have a number of high-quality individual players and their World Cup group looks to be pretty open - they are priced at 1/1 to qualify from Group G.

What:World Cup
When:20th November - 18th December 2022
How to watch:All matches will be shown on either the BBC or ITV
Odds:Brazil 9/2, England 11/2, France 6/1, Argentina 7/1, Spain 8/1

What is Switzerland's World Cup record?

The 2022 World Cup will be Switzerland's 12th appearance in the World Cup finals and they have reached the last eight on three occasions.

However, you have to go back to 1954 - the year they hosted the competition - to see the most recent example of a quarter-final appearance and, following the 1966 tournament, they were absent for 28 years until USA 1994.

They have qualified for five World Cups and in four of them, they have exited at the last 16 stage.

In Russia four years ago, the Rossocrociati were defeated by Sweden in the Last 16 thanks to Emil Forsberg's second-half goal.

Quarter Finals1934, 1938,1954
Last-161994, 2006, 2014, 2018
Group Stage1950, 1962, 1966, 2010

How did Switzerland qualify?

Switzerland qualified through being very defensively tough to break down - in eight matches they won five and drew three, conceding only two goals across the whole process with none of them being at home.

Crucially, they managed to hold Italy to two draws which helped scupper the Azzurri's chances of attempting a Euros and World Cup double.

Going forward, they bagged 15 goals from eight matches in what was a very respectable and impressive qualification campaign.

Their form since has dipped, with only one win from six games but when the pressure has been on, the Swiss have responded.

Who is in Switzerland's group?

Switzerland's group will feel familiar to that in Russia four years ago - they are reunited with Brazil and Serbia while Cameroon complete the line-up.

Their opening match comes against the African side on Thursday 24th November with Switzerland priced at 4/5 to win with Cameroon 15/4, and a draw a 12/5.

Switzerland then face Brazil on Thursday 28th November before rounding off the group against Serbia on Friday 2nd December.

Who is Switzerland's manager?

Murat Yakin is the man in charge of Switzerland after Vladimir Petkovic's seven-year spell as boss came to an end in August 2021.

The former Swiss centre-back has had a good year in charge of his country, guiding them to the World Cup despite winning only five of his 13 matches so far.

Prior to taking over, he had an array of jobs in his homeland, with spells at the likes of Basel, Grasshoppers, and Sion, while he also spent a year in charge of Spartak Moscow.

Yakin guided Basel to consecutive Swiss Super League titles between 2012-14.

Related World Cup Group G News

World Cup - Football: Group G preview

World Cup - Football: Brazil team profile

World Cup - Football: Cameroon team profile

World Cup - Football: Serbia team profile

Who is Switzerland's star player?

Looking at who is likely to go to Qatar, the main man is likely to be Xherdan Shaqiri, who currently plies his trade in the MLS with Chicago Fire following a disappointing stint at Lyon.

The diminutive playmaker has scored seven goals in major tournaments for the Swiss during his career and is regarded as a player who is capable of providing magic moments.

Goalkeeper Yann Sommer is also highly rated and at 33 is probably entering his best year as a player.

Who could be Switzerland's breakout star?

Many of Switzerland's current squad are experienced at least in terms of club football, so there aren't too many obvious candidates for a breakout star.

However, one youngster who could potentially impress is Noah Okafor who currently plays for RB Salzburg in Austria.

He is a dynamic forward player who has scored twice in eight caps for Switzerland and scored the goal which sent Salzburg through to the last 16 of last season's Champions League - the first Austrian team to achieve such a feat.

What is Switzerland's predicted line up and tactics?

Switzerland predicted line-up (4-3-3) Yann Sommer; Silvan Widmer, Manuel Akanji, Fabian Schar, Ricardo Rodriguez; Granit Xhaka, Remo Freuler, Djibril Sow; Xherdan Shaqiri, Steven Zuber, Haris Seferovic.

Lots of teams have tended to adopt a back-three but Switzerland prefer to operate with a sturdy back four with three all-round midfielders sat in front of them. This leads to them generally conceding very few goals on the international stage.

Up front, Haris Seferovic is likely to continue leading the line despite often being much maligned at international level, while Shaqiri will cut in from the right and almost act as a No. 10 despite that not being his starting position.

The likes of Okafor and Breel Embolo can provide speed off the bench if Switzerland need to stretch the game.

How far can Switzerland go in Qatar?

Switzerland are one of those teams where you wouldn't be overly surprised to see them reach the semi-finals or exit the group finishing bottom.

They are not a powerhouse nation but have proven in the past that they are at least capable of competing with the best - they knocked out world champions France in last year's Euros.

Reaching the last-16 will be the minimum aim and a run to the last eight would represent their best effort for nearly 70 years.

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