Serbia vs Switzerland
Competition: 2018 World Cup finals
Date: 22 June 2018
Kick-off: 20:00 CET
Serbia were one of the pleasant surprises of the first games in these finals. The surprise wasn’t that they beat Costa Rica, but the way they beat them, looking dominant on the pitch practically throughout the match. Unlike so many times in the past, they looked like a real team, not just a… group of individuals who didn’t “connect” with each other. Aleksandar Kolarov scored an absolutely fantastic goal from a free-kick, sending the ball to a spot where it was impossible even for awesome Keylor Navas to do something. Serbia did great defensively as well, looked very compact, focused, all 11, from… Aleksandar Mitrovic, their striker, to their goalkeeper. When they defended they looked like a perfectly knit spider web, blocking most Costa Rica scoring attempts very early.
Switzerland have produced one of the biggest surprises of the finals thus far, earning a point against Brazil. Twenty minutes into the game, when Philippe Coutinho curved the ball perfectly to open the scoring for the Brazilians, the cherry on top of 20 minutes in which the South Americans had looked absolutely dominant on the pitch, most expected an easy afternoon for them, and a nightmare starting for the Swiss. Anything but. Switzerland managed to balance the game before the end of the first half, go to the dressing room losing “only” 1-0, and five minutes into the second half they equalized(!). Replays showed there was a clear push by scorer Steven Zuber on Miranda, a perfectly-timed push on the back that prevented the Brazilian defender from jumping for the ball, but somehow the goal counted. Last time someone managed to avoid losing to Brazil in a World Cup opener was in 1978, when Sweden had managed a 1-1 draw in Argentina. Ever since then, Brazil had won all their openers, until a few days ago.
Previous five matches:
Costa Rica vs Serbia 0-1
Serbia vs Bolivia 5-1
Serbia vs Chile 0-1
Serbia vs Nigeria 2-0
Serbia vs Morocco 1-2
Brazil vs Switzerland 1-1
Switzerland vs Japan 2-0
Spain vs Switzerland 1-1
Switzerland vs Panama 6-0
Greece vs Switzerland 0-1
Serbia’s last group match is on Wednesday, against Brazil. Same day, Switzerland will be facing Costa Rica.
Serbia vs Switzerland: Head to head Stats
Serbia and Switzerland have never played against each other before.
Serbia vs Switzerland: Prediction
I’m backing Serbia to get at least a draw, and deep down I expect them to win.
Serbia vs Switzerland: Betting Tips
Serbia’s win pays 2.80, with their double chance down at 1.42.