Switzerland vs Slovenia by Gustav
Switzerland managed to recover very well after a very disappointing start for them. After two consecutive defeats which made the national to think they won't be able to qualify for EURO 2016, the team is now on a streak of four consecutive victories, thus found themselves being at the second position and with every chance to secure the progress directly to EURO - however, most likely they will need firstly to win this one in order to make their lives much more easier.
Having in mind that the English side is already six points above them and playing nothing against San Marino, there is no doubt that the main battle for the second position will be between these two opponents tonight. In the most recent game, Swiss side took an important 2:1 victory away from home against Lithuania, even though they were behind in the scoreline in 64th minute. However, they reacted as fast as possible, quickly equalizing within five minutes with a goal from Drmic, while Shaqiri brought them so much needed three pointer in 84th minute. Strongest part of the team remains their offensive lineup, as the team scored thirteen goals in last four matches in the group. Till the end of the qualifiers, they will be playing in England, Estonia and welcoming San Marino, which makes this one more than important. Defender Johan Djourou (Hamburg, 55 caps, 1 goal) and midfielder Fabian Frei (7 caps, 1 goal) weren't called due injuries.
Slovenia is close to secure the third position being two points above Estonia which will hardly find a way to catch them, however the main goal remains getting the second position and direct qualification to the EURO, as the team aims a victory here - three pointer that would be the only way for the Slovenians to actually get back in that race. Till the end of the qualifiers, they are welcoming Estonia and Lithuania and traveling to San Marino, which means that this game is the one that they can't afford to lose in case they want to continue the race for second position.
Obviously, this game is the most critical for them, as the team expects to earn all three victories in next three rounds, even though it might not be as easy as it looks on the first glance. In the most recent game back in June, they were defeated at home against England 2:3, even though they had a 2:2 draw just six minutes before the end of the game. Still, team of Srecko Katanac remains with decent chances to qualify, knowing that a victory tonight would give them significant advantage for the rest of the qualifying path. However, he said that they will be playing here against very talented opponent, adding that the most important thing for his team is not to repeat the mistakes they did in previous away games. Defender Miso Brecko (75 caps) and striker Tim Matavz (29 caps, 10 goals) are not part of the team this time.
Switzerland is on a nice run here and shouldn't blow up such an important game. A victory here would be a major step for them against generally poor away side like Slovenia is. Slovenians have two victories and eight defeats when playing on the road, having scored in only three out of last ten matches. Swiss look in-form at the moment and shouldn't have problems getting quite easy victory here, easier than the bookies represent.