Switzerland-Hungary: the match of great forgiveness – rts.ch

Switzerland-Hungary: the match of great forgiveness – rts.ch
Switzerland-Hungary: the match of great forgiveness – rts.ch

557 days after the round of 16 of the 2022 World Cup in Qatar against Portugal, Switzerland has the opportunity to win back the hearts of its supporters. A success this Saturday in Cologne against Hungary for their first match of Euro 2024 will make us forget the disastrous 6-1 at Lusail Stadium.

Murat Yakin and Co. know that a victory in this first match will practically ensure qualification for the round of 16 with a formula which will only eliminate eight of the thirty-two teams competing in this group stage. Above all, it will instill enormous confidence in the players before facing Scotland on Wednesday, the weakest team in this group A on paper, and, of course, Germany on June 23 in Frankfurt in a clash of neighbors which will unleash the passions throughout the country.

Nothing of a scarecrow

All that remains is to beat Hungary to experience, as in 2006, a beautiful summer dream in Germany. The task is far from insurmountable. Undefeated during the preliminary round in a group which included Serbia, Montenegro, Lithuania and Bulgaria, the selection led since 2018 by the Italian Marco Rossi commands a certain respect. But she’s not a scarecrow.

His playing master Dominik Szoboszlai was injured during the last preparation match after losing his starting place at Liverpool at the end of the season. Organized like the Swiss team in a 3-4-2-1 pattern, it does not have any notable individualities.

However, Switzerland, it should be remembered, will have in its ranks on Saturday at kick-off an Italian champion – Yann Sommer -, an English champion – Manuel Akanji – and a German champion – Granit Xhaka. If they evolve in the same register as in their club, the three men will offer the Swiss team an extraordinary foundation, to the extent that they have never been as strong as in this year 2024.

A Switzerland who also knows how to play very well

The only problem to solve for Murat Yakin is to find the right offensive animation to achieve both collective and undeniable individual superiority. With Silvan Widmer and Dan Ndoye, the coach considers himself sufficiently armed in the corridors.

In attack, Xherdan Shaqiri and Zeki Amdouni will certainly be called upon to compensate for the absences of Breel Embolo and Steven Zuber. The Basel and Geneva natives have demonstrated in the past that they can make a pair. No one can forget Shaqiri’s brilliant pass for Amdouni which allowed Switzerland to lead 2-0 in Lucerne against Romania last year.

Until the 89th minute, this meeting of June 19, 2023 had been one of the most beautiful delivered by Murat Yakin’s Switzerland with of course the 1-1 in Rome seven months earlier. These bright memories remind us that the Swiss team is also very capable of playing football very well. It’s up to her to demonstrate it again this Saturday to finally turn the page on the sad epilogue of the last World Cup.





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