The Swiss were being counted out of qualifying for the World Cup in September 2008. They were fresh off of a home loss to Luxemburg, a team with only two professional players and were playing at a terrible form just two games into the campaign.
Swiss fans wanted one of the most successful coaches in the world, Ottmar Hitzfeld, to resign. Things looked bleak and few held hope of the Swiss being able to qualify. The team responded; however, and won their next five games, with the real turning point being in a 2-1 win over Greece.
A lot of the credit can be pointed to Hitzfeld as he brought striker Blaise Nkufo back onto the squad from his boycott of the team. Nkufo would go on to score 5 goals in qualifying.
Some people express concern for the Swiss in South Africa. They have barely played opponents outside of Europe and many think they will be unprepared for the likes of Honduras and Chile.
The Swiss have been to 8 previous World Cups, reaching the quarter-finals three times as their best finish. They reached the second round in Germany in 2006, where they lost to Ukraine.
Hitzfeld has plenty of experiance as coach for the Swiss. He has won seven Bundesliga titles and a European Cup. Hitzfeld was born in Germany near the Swiss border and has always dreamed of coaching Switzerland. Now that his dream has come true, Hitzfeld will look to turn his team from near disaster to World Cup glory.
The German born coach's dream has finally come true to coach Switzerland, and the Swiss are happy to have him after his impressive coaching success.
The countries record holding scorer with 40 goals in 73 games but has been unlucky with injuries.
Very noticible in qualifying, Barnetta will play in the midfield after being a key component to Bayern Leverkusen's unbeaten run in the Bundesliga this season.
Has finally returned to the team after being away for four years, he played a big role in qualifying.
2010 World Cup Schedule:
Switzerland vs. Spain, Durban, South Africa, June 16th
Switzerland vs. Chile, Port Elizabeth, South Africa, June 21st
Switzerland vs. Honduras, Bloemfontein, South Africa, June 25th