What: FIFA 2010 World Cup
Who: Chile vs Switzerland (Group H)
When: Monday 20th June, 2010, at 15:00 UK time
Where: Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, Port Elizabeth, South Africaa

Determined to Entertain the World Cup

In a World Cup dominated by defensive football, Chile emerged as a welcome surprise, playing in an attacking and entertaining way. Against Honduras, the Chileans started with a 4-2-1-3 system and then shifted to the innovative 3-3-1-3, used by coach Marcelo Bielsa in qualifying. It is a system which only knows to attack.

In their first game Chile impressed everyone, but they also missed a lot of the chances they created, with Jorge Valdivia and Alexis Sanchez amongst the culprits. Their meeting with the Swiss will be very important to secure a second round spot with a match in hand, especially considering that La Roja’s last game will be against the Spaniards.

Spain’s Conquerors Ready for More

The Swiss team were responsible for the biggest shock in the first round, beating Spain, one of the principal favourites for the entire World Cup. Despite claims from many newspapers, the Alpines did not only play defensively against the Spaniards. Instead Ottmar Hitzfeld’s men were very organised and sometimes attacked with more than four players, even after they took the lead at the beginning of the second half.

Hitzfeld showed his fantastic tactical abilities against Vicente del Bosque and in the end the Swiss secured themselves an impressive clean sheet, despite Spain enjoying large amounts of possession and throwing the might of David Villa, Fernando Torres, Xavi and co. forward. Right back Stephan Lichsteiner and left back Reto Ziegler excelled with a strong performance in defence and by offering an attacking option.

Recent form

Chile 3-0 Israel (31/05; Friendly)
Chile 2-0 New Zealand (09/06; Friendly)
Honduras 1-0 Chile (16/06; World Cup – Group H)

Switzerland 0-1 Costa Rica (31/05; Friendly)
Switzerland 1-1 Italy (05/06; Friendly)
Spain 0-1 Switzerland (16/06; World Cup – Group H)

Players to watch

Chile – Alexis Sanchez: Sanchez enjoyed a great campaign at Udinese, despite his club not impressing in the last Serie A season. He plays an important role in Marcelo Bielsa’s 3-1-3-3 system, especially when he moves to the centre. In the match against Honduras, Sanchez missed a lot of opportunites and it could be dangerous for Chile if he does the same against a more experienced team like Switzerland.

Switzerland – Stephan Lichsteiner: The Lazio defender impressed tremendously in the first group game, and he practically blocked Andres Iniesta from having any useful influence. Lichsteiner plays an important role on Switzerland’s right-hand side and it will be interesting to see him against the Chilean forwards. Hitzfeld really needs another huge performance from the 26-year-old.

Match prediction

This is an interested meeting, between two teams that, for different reasons, shocked in the first round. Chile play wonderful football, but sometimes they are more interested in artistic football than scoring goals. Switzerland are very organised and Hitzfeld’s men are used to sacrificing individual brilliance for team play. Despite Switzerland being a tough nut to crack, the skilful Chileans should win through.

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