Wales take on Switzerland in their opening Euro 2020 fixture on Saturday afternoon.
The Welsh played out a disappointing 0-0 draw in their final friendly match against Albania on Saturday.
Caretaker manager Robert Page sent out a second string side for that friendly in a bid to protect Wales’ most valuable players. Although he did bring on Gareth Bale in the second half of the game.
After the news that Ryan Giggs will be suspended indefinitely, it was confirmed that Page will lead the team into Euro 2020.
Switzerland prepared for their Euros campaign with a comfortable win over Liechtenstein last Thursday.
After heading into halftime 1-0 up, Switzerland put their opponents to the sword in the second half. Following several substitutions, Switzerland went on a six goal scoring spree in the second 45 to secure an easy 7-0 win.
That was the perfect confidence boost for the squad heading into this game. Switzerland could be one of the dark horses in this tournament, so keep an eye on them.
Below, we’ll preview this Euro 2020 fixture and provide our predictions, the team news, our recommended bets and more…
Wales vs Switzerland Predictions
Wales’ preparations for Euro 2020 were thrown up in the air with the news that Head Coach Ryan Giggs wouldn’t be taking charge of the team.
The former Manchester United and Wales winger has been banned indefinitely due to ongoing court proceedings. It’s not yet known when he will return to the side.
Caretaker Robert Page has done well with the squad since he took over the reins. However their latest prep games ahead of the tournament have been far from ideal.
Before their 0-0 draw with Albania, Wales were comfortably beaten 3-0 by world champions France. The game was soured for Wales by an early red card for Liverpool defender Neco Williams.
They did beat Czech Republic in their last competitive fixture though. A late strike from Dan James secured a 1-0 win in 2022 World Cup qualifying.
Switzerland come into this opening game on the back of an impressive six-game winning streak. The latest was that confidence-boosting 7-0 win over Liechtenstein.
Before that, they’d seen off USA 2-1 before that. The winning score could have been bigger had Ricardo Rodriguez scored his first half penalty.
That was after the Swiss had beaten Finland in another friendly international. After being 2-1 down at half time, goals from Ruben Vargas and Haris Seferovic secured a 3-2 win.
In the week prior, Switzerland beat Lithuania 1-0 in their 2022 World Cup qualifying group. That was after their 3-1 win over Bulgaria.
They also drew 1-1 with Spain in the UEFA Nations League last year, so they’re by no means a pushover. Expect a very competitive game here.
Read on for our Wales v Switzerland predictions and best bets.
Wales vs Switzerland Head to Head
These two nations have met on just four occasions in the past.
The first meeting was in March 1999 in Euro 2000 qualifying. Switzerland ran out 2-0 winners on that occasion.
They met again later that year in the reverse fixture, with Switzerland again winning by a 2-0 scoreline.
The two countries didn’t meet again for 11 years, as they were again drawn in the same qualifying group for Euro 2012.
Switzerland won the first game convincingly. Two goals either side of half time negated Gareth Bale’s first half strike as the Swiss ran out 4-1 winners.
The reverse fixture in 2011 saw the Welsh get revenge. Second half strikes from Aaron Ramsey and Gareth Bale secured a 2-0 win for Wales. However, both nations missed out on the automatic qualifying places.
With such a long gap since their last meeting, the head to head records can’t really provide much insight.
Wales Team News – D L W W L
After getting 20 minutes under his belt in the 0-0 draw with Albania, Gareth Bale is expected to start here.
The Real Madrid forward hasn’t scored for Wales since October 2019 and he’ll be hoping to get off the mark straight away here.
As was the case in Wales’ last competitive match against Czech Republic, Dan James is expected to partner Bale up front.
The Manchester United man scored the winning goal in that game, and he’ll be hoping for more of the same here.
Our Wales v Switzerland predictions also expect Ethan Ampadu to partner Harry Wilson in the heart of the Wales midfield.
Leicester stopper Danny Ward was on the bench for the recent friendly with Albania. The thinking is he was being protected to ensure he’s fit for this first game.
He’s expected to start in between the sticks, ahead of Wayne Hennessey. The Crystal Palace keeper has spent the vast majority of the season in the treatment room and will serve as back up for the tournament.
Switzerland Team News – W W W W W
There’s no new injury concerns for Switzerland heading into this opening clash.
The squad looks to have come out of the recent friendly match unscathed and can go full strength in this game.
That likely means that Seferovic will be starting up front as the main attacking threat. The Benfica forward has scored two in his last four international appearances.
He’ll likely be partnered by Borussia Monchengladbach striker Breel Embolo. The 24 year old was rested in the recent friendly and should be fit for this.
Xherdan Shaqiri will most probably start behind the main strikers as the creative influence. The 29 year old hasn’t featured a lot for Liverpool this season, but he’s still one of the main men in this Switzerland team.
Arsenal midfielder Granit Xhaka is expected to start this game in the middle of the park. Meanwhile Yann Sommer will occupy the goal.
Wales vs Switzerland Betting Tips
This is a very tough opening game for Wales and the odds reflect that. Our trades have Wales priced up as the 3/1 (Super Odds) outsiders to win the game in our Wales v Switzerland match bets.
The Swiss are favourites, but the traders are cautious and have them priced at 5/4 (Super Odds) for victory. Given the form of the two sides, that could represent great value.
A lot of these early tournament games can be cagey affairs, with neither team wanting to lose. If you think it will end all square, you can back the draw at 17/8.
Even with the influence of Gareth Bale on their side, it’s hard to see how Wales can cope with Switzerland. The Swiss have a great balance of youth, experience, speed and technical ability and should prove too much for Wales in this game.