The Switzerland national football team, one of the oldest world teams, has been qualified for the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia as the winner in the play-off over the Northern Ireland national football team. Switzerland held a very strong tournament and took the second place in Group B of the European qualification. The Switzerland national football team won 9 of 10 matches, and the only defeat in the last tour in the match against the Portugal national football team didn’t allow Red-Whites to secure a berth at the 2018 FIFA World Cup Russia.
Over its long history, Switzerland was considered as an average team which never tried to obtain gains. For ten times Red-Whites took part in the World Cup and three times they managed to get through into the eight strongest teams. And three most successful performances of the Swisses fall on the five first World Cups.
Switzerland couldn’t be qualified for the first in history World Cup, but could get into the second World Cup taking place in Italy. In the first round Red-Whites won 3:2 against the team of the Netherlands, and then, in the quarterfinal, they yielded to the team of Czechoslovakia, the future finalist of the tournament, the score was the same.
Four years later, the Swisses repeated their achievement. In the tournament held in France, in round of last 16, Switzerland outplayed Germany. The first match between these teams came to the end in draw 1:1, therefore a replay was required where the Swisses were stronger, 4:2. Alas, the quarterfinal didn’t “bow its neck” to the football players from the country of banks and cheese — another defeat from the future finalist of the World Cup. Switzerland yielded to Hungary, score 0:2.
In Switzerland they had high hopes for the home 1954 World Cup. The hosts successfully started the tournament and won over the Italians, but in the second match they gave way to the England national football team. To leave for the quarterfinal the Swisses should have won over the Italians again in an extra match which was done brilliantly — convincing victory 4:1. Unfortunately, in the home tournament the quarterfinal became for the Swisses an impassable stage — the defeat from the Austria national football team with tennis score 5:7 (the record of effectiveness in the World Cups). The Swiss forward Josef Hugi scored 6 goals in the tournament. Today, Josef is still the top scorer of the Switzerland national football team in the World Cups.
After the home World Cup, the Switzerland national football team entered a long hard period. Red-Whites could be qualified for the 1962 and 1966 World Cups, but they lost all matches of those tournaments. Only in the FIFA World Cup USA the Switzerland national football team could show worthy result again.
In many respects, Switzerland was lucky with the drawing which sent Red-Whites into Group A with the teams of the USA, Romania and Colombia. In the first two matches the Swisses gathered four points (after a draw against the tournament hosts and victory 4:1 over Romania) which were enough for early getting into the play-offs. But already in round of last 16 the Spain national football team, which won a confident victory, score 3:0, stood in the way of Switzerland.
12 years later, Red-Whites were qualified for the World Cup again, and again they could leave for the play-offs. That time the team showed excellent football. At the same time, Switzerland missed no ball in the tournament. At the group stage, the Togo and Korea national football teams were beat, score 2:0, and the match against the French drew a tie, 0:0. Also spectators saw no goals in the match of round of last 16 between the teams of Switzerland and Ukraine, but in a penalty shootout the Ukrainians were stronger. Thus, the Swisses lost no match, but they couldn’t get into the eight strongest teams.
In the 2014 FIFA World Cup Brazil, Switzerland appeared a team much more attacking. At the group stage, the Swisses scored seven goals in three matches, won two victories (over Honduras and Ecuador) and lost one match against France. The team midfielder Xherdan Shaqiri scored three goals in the match against Honduras. Unfortunately, in the play-offs Red-Whites attacking playing left no trace. In the match of round of last 16, Switzerland played a goalless draw against the Argentina national football team, and the South Americans scored a decisive goal in extra time and kicked out the Swisses from the tournament.
Thus, since 1956 Switzerland has never reached quarterfinals in the World Cups.
The highest achievement of Switzerland in the UEFA European Championships is their getting into round of last 16 in 2016 in the European Championship in France. Unfortunately, even in the home tournament in 2008 Red-Whites couldn’t overcome the group stage.
The today's Switzerland national football team takes the record eighth position in the FIFA ranking, and in the World Cup in Russia they will take part in drawing from the second basket. In case of a successful lot Red-Whites will be quite ready to get into the play-off and to repeat their best at the moment achievement (getting into the quarterfinal), but no more. The Switzerland should hardly ever count on medals in Russia. Their squad is presented by players from various European championships with the outstanding captain, the defender of Juventus Stephan Lichtsteiner.