Switzerland continue their EURO 2020 qualification campaign on Tuesday night, when they host Denmark in Basel.
The Schweizer Nati will be eager to build on their strong start in Group D, following their 2-0 win against Georgia last Saturday. They currently sit top of their qualifying group, as they aim to reach the European Championship for the fifth time in their history.
It will also be their last game for three months, when they play in the inaugural Nations League Finals in Portugal. The Swiss will not return to their qualifying campaign for another six months, next playing the Republic of Ireland in September.
Here’s everything you need to know about Switzerland’s second qualifier.
|When is it?||Tuesday 26 March 2019|
|What time is kick-off?||20:45 local time (19:45 UK)|
|Where is it?||St. Jakob-Park, Basel|
|Where can I watch it? (UK)||Sky Sports Football|
Switzerland are still without Xherdan Shaqiri and Haris Seferović, who were both ruled out of the qualifiers through injury. Admir Mehmedi may be up for selection after missing last week’s win due to illness, with Vladimir Petković making a decision on the Wolfsburg forward in the coming days.
Defender Fabian Schär is also a doubt, after a nasty collision saw him knocked unconscious in Georgia. Although the Newcastle defender finished the game, he may not be in the right condition to play just three days later.
Switzerland are back in action just three days after their last game, when they began their qualifying campaign in style. The Schweizer Nati beat Georgia 2-0 in Tbilisi, thanks to goals from Steven Zuber (above) and Denis Zakaria.
It means the Swiss have now won their three competitive games in a row, following on from last year’s success in the Nations League. Last Saturday’s result also brought more positives, as it was the Nati’s first clean sheet in six international games.
Meanwhile, Denmark will be getting their EURO 2020 qualifying campaign underway in Basel, having no qualifier last week. However the Danes were in action over the weekend, as they were held to a 2-2 draw in a friendly against Kosovo.
Denmark will also be eager to build on from a fantastic 2018. They reached the World Cup knockout stages, won promotion to League A after in the Nations League and lost just one of their 14 matches throughout the course of the year.
Switzerland and Denmark have met 10 times in the past, with half of those games ending in a draw. Denmark have the better record overall, with three wins compared to Switzerland’s two.
This will be the first meeting in 20 years, with their last encounter coming during qualification for EURO 2000. In their last visit to Switzerland, Denmark held their hosts to a 1-1 draw in Zürich back in October 1998. However the Danes won their last meeting in September 1999, as they beat the Swiss 2-1 in Copenhagen.
MY NATI LINEUP
It was interesting to see Vladimir Petković play a 4-4-1-1 against Georgia, as although he has previously used that formation he is clearly far more accustomed to a 4-2-3-1, which I believe he will revert back to.
Petković could easily play the same team from Saturday, but with Schär a doubt Timm Klose could get his chance in defence. Remo Freuler should retain his place on the wing, while Steven Zuber will be eager to continue his fine form for the Nati.
Overall there’s not much that needs to be changed, with Switzerland having a large pool of players who have established places in the squad. Though Petković could experiment, he may well go for the exact same eleven players.
It will be another tough test for Switzerland, as they come up against their toughest opponents of Group D. Denmark sit 10th in the FIFA World Ranking – just two places below the Swiss – and have proven their quality with their performances and their pedigree of players.
It is guaranteed to be an intriguing battle in Basel, as both teams aim to take cruise control of their group. Though the Danes will certainly be a tough opposition, I have no doubt that Switzerland can play to their full potential and edge the win.
My Prediction: Switzerland 2-1 Denmark