Despite being ranked sixth in the world, Switzerland seem to be coming into the World Cup under the radar. The Swiss side have little gems of talent in their squad, and they will be a match for any team they face in Russia this summer.
If you're looking for a challenge on FIFA 18’s World Cup mode, then Switzerland are a great choice. They face Brazil in the group stage and have tricky customers in the form of Serbia and Costa Rica, with things getting no easier in the knockout stages. RealSport is on hand for all there is to know in setting up with the Swiss for the tournament.
Switzerland have a four star rating on the World Cup update, and this is made up of a 76 attack, 77 midfield and 78 defence.
Switzerland’s potential World Cup fixtures
Round of 16
England or Colombia
Spain or Brazil
Switzerland will fancy their chances in getting out of Group E, but things get off to a tough start with a big clash against one of the favourites Brazil in Rostov. You will do well to get a point out of that game, and then you should be looking to rack the goals up against Serbia and Costa Rica.
You should be targeting second place in the group, and unfortunately, if that is the case, you are likely to meet defending world champions Germany in the Round of 16. Now, you may think that this is the end of your World Cup, but a lot of the Swiss team play, or have played in Germany.
The inside knowledge could become vital, and if you can get through that tie, the draw opens up and you have the much more favourable tie against England or Colombia in the quarter-finals. Again not easy, but after coming through Germany, you should have your eyes on the final, with France and Spain possible opponents for the remainder of the tournament.
Switzerland boss Vladimir Petkovic has implemented a 4-2-3-1 wide formation, and you should do the same on FIFA 18.
Yann Sommer is in goal, Arsenal new man Stephan Lichtsteiner captains the side from right back with Fabian Schar, Manuel Akanji and penalty expert Ricardo Rodriguez (86 penalties) also in the back four.
Granit Xhaka is the midfield enforcer (92 aggression), and he is partnered by Denis Zakaria in defensive midfield. Blerim Dzemaili operates in attacking midfield, with main threat Xherdan Shaqiri (85 shot power) and Steven Zuber on the flanks. Breel Embolo is up front on his own.
Xherdan Shaqiri may not be the player that saw him move to Bayern Munich in 2012, but if you give him the ball enough, the Stoke man will make something happen.
He is great on the ball (92 balance), and to maximise his impact in the game, you should head to the instructions tab and change his chance creation to ‘cut inside’. You can then look to shoot, play in a teammate or drive at the defence (86 dribbling).
The other big name in this Swiss side is Granit Xhaka. He does come under criticism at Arsenal, but he is a powerful player and can strike at goal from distance (88 shot power). He will be key in winning the ball back and starting attacks for your side.
Lastly, your full backs are a huge asset. Stephan Lichtsteiner and Ricardo Rodriguez (87 crossing) can bomb down the flanks to provide the width. To ensure they are always available, make sure ‘always overlap’ is selected for attacking runs.
Of course, you may want to sit a little deeper in your opening game against Brazil and then again when you reach the knockout stages. One option is to slip into a defensive mentality on the D-pad, or keep your full backs reigned in or alter one of your defensive midfielders’ attacking support to ‘stay back while attacking’.
Take that next step
Switzerland have never made it past the World Cup quarter-finals, and that was last achieved in 1954 when they hosted the tournament. This Swiss side, although not one of the world’s best, is a greater team than that, and perhaps Russia could be the platform for them to create a bit of history.
It's a tough draw, and you sense that the only way you can go deep into this tournament is if the Swiss defeat Brazil and finish above them in the group stages. That would open up the draw massively for you and allow you to build momentum for the back end of the tournament. Can you be the man to make history with Switzerland?
Switzerland squad player ratings
|Roman Burki||27||GK||Borussia Dortmund||82|
|Marwin Hitz||30||GK||Borussia Dortmund||79|
|Yvon Mvogo||23||GK||RB Leipzig||75|
|Ricardo Rodriguez||25||LB CB||AC Milan||81|
|Stephan Lichtsteiner||34||RB RM||Arsenal||81|
|Fabian Schar||26||CB||Deportivo La Coruna||77|
|Michael Lang||27||RB RM||Basel||76|
|Manuel Akanji||22||CB||Borussia Dortmund||76|
|Silvan Widmer||25||RB RM||Udinese||75|
|Ulisses Garcia||22||LB LM||Nurnberg||67|
|Granit Xhaka||25||CM CDM||Arsenal||82|
|Blerim Dzemaili||32||CAM CM||Bologna||78|
|Renato Steffen||26||LM RM CAM||Wolfsburg||76|
|Admir Mehmedi||27||LM CF RM ST||Wolfsburg||76|
|Steven Zuber||26||LM LB||Hoffenheim||76|
|Denis Zakaria||21||CM CDM||‘Gladbach||76|
|Gelson Fernandes||31||CDM CM||Eintracht Frankfurt||75|
|Valon Behrami||33||CDM CM||Udinese||75|
|Fabian Frei||29||CM CDM CAM||Basel||75|
|Valentin Stocker||29||CAM LM||Basel||75|
|Remo Freuler||26||CM CDM||Atalanta||75|
|Edimilson Fernandes||22||CM CAM||West Ham||72|
|Breel Embolo||21||ST RM||Schalke||76|
|Josip Drmic||25||ST RM LM||‘Gladbach||75|
|Mario Gavranovic||28||ST CAM||Dinamo Zagreb||73|