UEFA Nations League: Switzerland vs Belgium preview


Belgium are looking to secure top spot in Group 2 and qualification to the final phase of the UEFA Nations League when they visit Switzerland at Swissporarena in Luzern on Sunday. Belgium won the reverse fixture 2-1 in October, Romelu Lukaku scored both goals for the Belgians, either side of a Swiss goal scored by Mario Gavranovic. That was the second consecutive win for Belgium over Switzerland, and the third in the last four matches. Switzerland have not won a match against Belgium since 1983, when they won an European Championship qualifying match 3-1.

Switzerland have won two of their three UEFA Nations League matches so far, but both victories were against a disappointingly weak Iceland side. The first victory was at home for Switzerland and it was a heavy won, it ended 6-0, while the away match in Iceland was won 2-1 by the Swiss. Since their 6-0 victory over Iceland they have lost three of the following four matches, including a surprising 1-0 defeat against Qatar in a friendly match earlier this week. It is true that they did not field their strongest starting eleven in that friendly, but it's still a major upset and not the kind of result they wanted to see before the decisive match against Belgium.

Belgium have dominated the group so far, they have won three matches out of three, scored 7 goals and conceded just one. They started with a 3-0 victory in Iceland, then defeated Switzerland 2-1 in Brussels, and this week they extended the winning streak with a 2-0 victory over Iceland. Michy Batshuayi scored both goals against Iceland as Romelu Lukaku was injured, and the youngster might keep his place in the starting eleven if the Manchester United striker does not recover in time for Sunday's match. Belgium have lost just one of their last 31 matches in all competitions, and that was the World Cup semi-final against France.

Probable line-ups:

Switzerland: Sommer - Lang, Elvedi, Schar, Rodriguez - Zakaria, Xhaka - Seferovic, Shaqiri, Zuber - Gavranovic

Belgium: Courtois - Alderweireld, Kompany, Boyata - Meunier, Tielemans, Witsel, T. Hazard - Mertens, Batshuayi, E. Hazard

My prediction: Belgium to win 2-0, the Belgians are a much stronger side than Switzerland and they should be able to prove it.

Here are the odds for the match at Bet365:

Switzerland win - 3.60
Draw - 3.40
Belgium win - 2.20

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