Betting-Previews.com brings you a World Cup 2022 qualifications betting preview and prediction for a match between Italy and Switzerland, who will clash on Sunday, September 5, at St. Jakob-Park in Basel. These two nations last met in June, when Italy crushed Switzerland 3-0 during EURO 2020.
Switzerland vs Italy
When: Sunday, September 5 – 20:45 CEST
Where: St. Jakob-Park in Basel, Switzerland
Weather: Clear, 18°C
Referee: Carlos del Cerro Grande (SPA)
Italy are flying high following their successful title run at the EURO 2020; however, while the Azzurri claimed the prestigious trophy, you could say they were a bit lucky – they needed extra time to defeat Austria and penalties to make it past Spain and England. Still solid result, but we would be careful not to overreact to Italy’s success in July.
Switzerland, on the other side, were slightly unlucky not to achieve more at EURO 2020. They made it through the group stage with relative ease, eliminated the reigning World Cup champions, France, but had to admit defeat to Spain after penalties in the quarter-finals.
Italy’s Run Through EURO 2020
As mentioned, Italy were a bit lucky to win the trophy in July. That’s not to say that the Azzuri played poorly, but if you look at each of their game at the tournament, you could start questioning how did they even manage to make it so far.
Most notable, Italy edged past Wales (1-0), who had to play with 10 men, then needed extra time to defeat Austria and two penalties to defeat Spain and England. In all fairness, Italy’s only solid results happened in their opening two games of the tournament, when they bested Turkey and Switzerland with 3-0.
Obviously, Italy’s win against the Swiss should hold more weight for this prediction; granted, we have to mention that that was probably Italy’s best game of the tournament and arguably one of Switzerland’s worst performances of EURO 2020.
Italy enter this match following a 1-1 draw against Bulgaria, who stole a point from the reigning European champions on Thursday in Florence. The result looks terrible as it is, but we must also mention that Italy struggled to do much with the ball since scoring the opening goal in 16′ – even though they had 71% ball possession throughout the match and 27 goal attempts.
Evidently, scoring goals is a problem for the Italian squad, which could result in some changes in their lineup for tonight’s game.
Switzerland With A New Manager
Following Switzerland’s quarter-finals appearance at the EURO 2020, the team have changed their manager. Former Basel boss Murat Yakin took over the team and recorded his maiden victory against Greece (1-0) in a friendly match on Wednesday.
As discussed above, Swiss did well at the EURO 2020, where they made it into the playoffs and eliminated France and put up a good fight against Spain. Even more impressive is that Switzerland had to play against La Roja with 10 men for 43 minutes yet still prevented Spain from scoring a goal.
All in all, Switzerland exceeded everyone’s expectations at the tournament and should feel confident heading into tonight’s match. Regarding team news, Granit Xhaka, Breel Embolo, and Xherdan Shaqiri won’t be available and could be replaced by Nico Elvedi, Yann Sommer, and Manuel Akanji.
Switzerland are 7-1-2 across their last 10 outings but 0-4-1 in the head-to-head with Italy while playing at home. The Swiss last won against Italy on home soil in 1993 (1-0), which might not sound great; however, Italy haven’t won a single match in Switzerland since 2003 (2-1).
Switzerland vs Italy Betting Pick
Roberto Mancini is expected to make some changes in a bid to improve upon Italy’s disastrous showing against Bulgaria on Thursday; however, even with changes, it’s hard to imagine Italy playing much better.
The Azzurri are the reigning European champions, but we wouldn’t underestimate Switzerland, who have proven that they can compete with the worlds’ best teams. They might have lost against Italy in June, but that one result alone isn’t enough for us to write them off.
Prediction: Switzerland +0.50 Asian Handicap – 1.93 at Sportmarket