Switzerland take on Honduras knowing that a two-goal winning margin would be enough to see them qualify from Group H. While Honduras could still progress with a big victory, their poor goal difference leaves the Central American team with little but pride to play for as the two sides take to the field for the final group game in Bloemfontein.
Honduras Coach Reinaldo Rueda will have been disappointed with his team’s performances in the competition to this point. Against both Chile and Spain, Honduras really struggled to create scoring opportunities and star striker David Suazo rarely touched the ball. The team is fortunate have been not to have conceded more goals to this point, as they’ve been completely overwhelmed in both groups games. Facing over 40 shots in total, goalkeeper Noel Valladares has done well to only concede three goals.
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Switzerland vs Honduras Odds:
Against Switzerland, Honduras will have more opportunity to attack than they have in previous games, because the Swiss team tend to play deeper than both Chile and Spain. This should take the pressure off of players like right back Oscar Chavez who was tormented for the entire 90 minutes of their previous game by David Villa of Spain.
As one of Honduras’s most celebrated players, Wilson Palacios’s performances have come under scrutiny. Palacios will hope to have an easier time than in his previous outing, where Spanish central midfielder Xavi took control of the game, leaving the Spurs man unable to stamp his authority on the action and Honduras looking toothless as a result. The key for Honduras will be to make better use of possession and use the space they will be given by the deep-lying Switzerland midfield.
For Switzerland, the joy of beating Spain in their first group game has been tempered slightly by their defeat to Chile. Despite boasting one of the meanest defenses in international football, Switzerland’s attacking players don’t seem to have the same talent as those guarding their goal. Alexander Frei came back for the defeat to Chile, but he’s still regaining fitness after a long-term injury and looked a shadow of the player who holds the record for most goals in international football for his country.
Switzerland will be without Valon Behrami for this encounter after his sending off against Chile. And even though he plays in the right back position, it will be his forays into the opposition half that his teammates will miss the most during this game, as they often rely on his deliveries into the box from the right-hand side for goals scoring opportunities. Switzerland need goals in this one, so Coach Ottmar Hitzfeld will likely opt for the experienced strike pairing of Alexander Frei and Blase N’Kufo to begin the game, with young striker Eric Derdiyok waiting on the bench ready to make an entrance if the score sheet is still blank later in the game.
Switzerland will feel confident of making the knockout rounds of South Africa 2010 despite their defeat to Chile and although Honduras will offer a stern resistance to Switzerland’s sporadic attacks, there will likely be at least one goal in this for Ottmar Hitzfeld’s team if they take to the game with some attacking intent.
Switzerland vs Honduras Prediction: Switzerland 2- 0 Honduras.
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