Friday, October 20, 2017

Prediction: Switzerland vs Hungary

Tom Dunstan in Free Soccer Predictions, World Cup 6 Oct 2017

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Verdict: Switzerland to Win to Nil

Best Odds: 6/4

Bookmaker: Bet365

Coming into the penultimate game in Group B, it really is a tale of two sides who have embarked on two very different qualifying campaigns. As for Switzerland, Vladimir Petkovic and his Swiss side will be looking to maintain their perfect record on their road to Russia. But, Hungary will simply be looking to upset the party atmosphere at the St. Jakob-Park . Although Hungary may sit third in the group, they have no mathematical way of qualifying for the finals next summer.

Switzerland

For Switzerland boss Vladimir Petkovic, he will be hoping that the World Cup finals next year are as easy as their qualifying round. In a group that consisted of Andorra, Faroe Islands and Latvia, it’s no surprise that Switzerland have mounted a strong campaign. But, it’s the dominance that the Swiss have shown that has caught peoples attention.

In the whole of the qualifying groups, only two teams can still boast an unbeaten record. Unsurprisingly, one of them belongs to defending World champions Germany while the other belongs to Switzerland who have played 8, won 8.

Although it has been a flawless campaign as far, Switzerland will know that they aren’t over the line just yet. Mathematically, it is still a possibility that the boys in Red could lose their automatic spot. The Swiss sit three points clear at the top of Group B, but, a potential defeat to archrivals Portugal in their final game could send them into the playoff rounds.

It looks like Saturday night should be a routine outing for Switzerland tho, six of their eight wins have come without them conceding a single goal and they have not conceded at home this term.

Team News

There are only a few minor setbacks that Vladimir Petkovic will have to deal with. Switzerland and Borussia Dortmund number one, Roman Burki has withdrawn from the squad due to an infected tooth. Along with Burki, veteran midfielder Valon Behrami has also withdrawn from the squad following injury concerns.

On a positive note for the Swiss fans, starman Xherdan Shaqiri is in the squad along with Benfica’s Haris Seferovic who has already scored seven goals for club and country this season.

Hungary

It really is a different story for Hungary tho, they have a strong case for the most disappointing side in any of the qualifying groups. Coming off the back of reaching the final 16 at last years European championships in France, many expected that ‘The Magical Magyars’ might be a team to keep an eye on.

Instead, Hungary have only managed to pick up 10 points out of a possible 24, their poor form was epitomised by an embarrassing 1-0 defeat at the hands of Andorra back in June.

On paper, it looks like life isn’t too bad in the Hungary camp, they currently sit third in Group B, only behind Portugal and the Swiss. But, if you dig a little deeper, you will see that they’re a very distant third. Hungary currently sits a staggering 14 points behind Switzerland and Bernd Storck’s side have lost five of their last six international games without scoring a single goal.

Team News

Sadly for Hungary, their injury list is as bad as their recent run of form. Hungary will be missing their two leading goal threats as both Tamas Priskin and fellow centre-forward Adam Szalai are still carrying injuries that will see them sidelined for Saturday’s game.

It looks like 24-year-old uncapped Roland Ugrai will be the man leading Hungary’s attack.

Key Factors to Consider

  • The Swiss came away 3-2 winners last time the sides met
  • Hungary have failed to score in 75% of their away matches
  • Switzerland haven’t conceded at home so far in qualifiers
  • Hungary have lost 5 of their last 6
  • Switzerland have not dropped any points thus far

Conclusion

Although Hungary might be hoping to throw a spanner in the works, it doesn’t look too likely to happen. With Hungary’s poor run of form and no real first choice striker to lead their attack, they look to be vulnerable at both ends of the pitch.

With Switzerland winning their last six games on the bounce, without conceding a single goal, we expect that the outcome will be a similar one tomorrow evening.

Verdict: Switzerland to Win to Nil

Best Odds: 6/4

Bookmaker: Bet365

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tom Dunstan


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