Serbia and Switzerland will be gearing up for their Group E clash that could have a real impact on who progresses to the last 16. For the Serbs, the equation is simple. If they win they are guaranteed a place in the knockout rounds. However, any other result will leave them probably needing a result because a Swiss win against Costa Rica on the final game could put them through.
Therefore, it promises to be a competitive, close encounter with so much on the line but there’s also a lot of quality. From Granit Xhaka and Xherdan Shaqiri on the Swiss team to Sergej Milinković-Savić and Nemanja Matic for Serbia, among many others, it could be a high-quality fixture.
Here we will give you Serbia vs Switzerland betting tips, look at where the game will be won, the key players and a Serbia vs Switzerland prediction for the Group E encounter.
Our Serbia vs Switzerland Prediction: Serbia 2-1 Switzerland
Our Serbia vs Switzerland prediction tips is for a very tight match that Serbia just edge given, a result which would confirm their progress and virtually eliminate the Swiss.
Despite only winning 1-0 against Costa Rica in their opening game, thanks to a stunning Aleksandr Kolorov free-kick, Serbia were very convincing. They dominated possession, created several clear-cut chances and only wasteful finishing prevented them from scoring many more. Obviously, that’s something to rectify but overall the manner of the performance was pleasing.
Similarly, Switzerland will take a lot of heart from their first performance, gaining a very credible draw against pre-tournament favourites Brazil. Surprisingly, it was fully deserved too, with the defence limiting the Samba Boys to few clear chances and the Swiss taking the opportunity that came their way. They will have to approach this game in a different manner but they will be confident.
Our recommended tip – Serbia to win
This is going to be a very tight game and in truth it could go either way but we think Serbia just have enough to edge it as they have extra quality in key areas.
Defensively they are solid and the Swiss forwards are relatively weak. However, going the other way, Serbia have much more cutting edge. Milinković-Savić is a potential star and his attacking midfield role could be too hard for the Swiss to handle. His link-up with Aleksandr Mitrovic, which was impressive against Costa Rica, should be the difference between two decent sides.
Perhaps surprisingly, the clash in Kaliningrad will be the first time the two European nations have met.
As for their recent games, as mentioned, Serbia were impressive against a resilient Costa Rica side. They looked comfortable defensively and their key men stood up when they needed. Kolorov scored a stunning free-kick, Matic controlled the midfield and the forwards were dangerous and created chances.
Switzerland were defensive in their setup against Brazil, understandably, but they gained a valuable point. They will have to show more ambition from the off on Friday but they are capable. Full-backs Stephan Lichtsteiner and Ricardo Rodriguez are quality options and will be given more license to get forward.
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Players to watch – Sergej Milinković-Savić & Xherdan Shaqiri
We’ve already mentioned the talented Lazio youngster but he really is a future world star. He shone in Serie A and took that form into the first game. He is big, powerful but technically superb and is so hard to deal with. He is sure to be closely marked but he has the talent to open up the Swiss defence.
For Switzerland, they will have to attack more and Shaqiri will be central to that. His ability is not in doubt and he really is a potential match-winner. The Stoke man has delivered on the big stage for his country and will be the go-to man on Friday night. He will be given license to roam and could cause havoc with his intelligence and technique.