For our fourth tactical analysis, we take a look at the match between Sweden and Switzerland in the FIFA World Cup Round of 16. Seb Larsson and Marcus Berg will go head to head against Xherdan Shaqiri and Granit Xhaka, the match will decide who among them are the best striker.
Sweden is a well organized but with no superstars. They will have a 4-4-2 formation. Their midfield pick passes for strikers or strike for himself. This team is of the conservative type, passing the ball to full back when regaining possession than attacking. They would then pass long to strikers to create space or inside movement for the midfield.
Switzerland has a 4-2-3-1 formation with 4 defenders and a lone striker. Two players on the front make cover shadows of opposition midfielders, blocking passes from the opposition defenders, leading to an effective defensive structure. If opposition passes on the side, the midfield will be triggered. One of the front two will move to provide support and the midfield and one of the defender (depending on which side) will press their respective opponents, resulting to a reduce ball-receiver time for opponents and opening a space which leads for the opposition to go back the ball or pass long (but they could technically pass on the open midfield though it is compressed). They attack through fall backs pushing high. Their positional structure will make opponents confused as to who to mark.
Marcus Berg (Forward) vs Nico Elvedi (Defender)
Berg will have a problem penetrating Elvedi and the other defenders of Switzerland unless they cut through the open midfield.
Emil Forsberg (Midfielder) vs Remo Freuler (Midfielder)
The battle of the midfield is important for Sweden to control the ball movement as Switzerland will be expected to reduce ball-receiver time.
Oscar Hiljermark (Midfielder) vs Fabian Schaer (Midfielder)
Fabian Schaer is expected to perform more against the Sweden side which is known to cut passes for their strikers.
Martin Olsson (Defender) vs Granit Xhaka (Midfielder)
Granit Xhaka should be a problem to the Sweden defender as he could go deep on the opponent territory to strike a goal.
Ludwig Augustinsson (Defender) vs Xherdan Shaqiri (Midfielder)
Along with Xhaka, Xherdan Shaqiri’s style could be another problem for the clinical approach of Sweden.
Sebastian Larsson (Midfielder) vs Blerim Dzemaili (Midfielder)
Larsson will be on the center of Sweden’s tactics and should deliver for his team, but first he should beat the effective defensive structure of Switzerland.