The Romanian team arrived at Euro 2016 with the best defensive record of any qualifying nation. Anghel Iordenescu’s side conceded just two goals in their ten qualifying matches and seven in their six warm-up games ahead of the tournament. Romania also worked hard against France in its opening Euro 2016 game but ended up losing narrowly thanks to a last minute goal from Dimitri Payet.
Switzerland recovered from a poor start to its qualification campaign, and despite losing both games against England, comfortably finished second in Group E, but going into the tournament had lost four out of six warm-up games. That mediocre form continued in Switzerland’s opening Euro 2016 match against Albania and Vladimir Petkovic’s side was slightly fortunate to get away with a victory.
Romania vs. Switzerland – H2H Stats
Romania and Switzerland have met eleven times in their history, since their first match in Berne in 1933 which ended in a 2-2 draw.
Romania has had the better of their encounters, winning five times, compared to four wins for Switzerland, and won three of their first five meetings, including both games during qualification for the 1970 World Cup.
But Switzerland has also had some notable successes, including a 7-1 thrashing of Romania in 1967, and a surprise 4-1 win in their Group A encounter in the 1994 World Cup, a tournament in which Romania eventually reached the quarter-finals.
Romania doesn’t have a Plan B, but the team has come this far by Plan A, and we can’t expect any dramatic changes. The Romanian coaching staff will have been encouraged by how well Albania did against Switzerland, and it will be no surprise to see the team line-up as they did against France, with at least two covering midfielders protecting the defence. The tactic will be to soak up the pressure and hit Switzerland on the counter attack, primarily through the wide areas.
Switzerland’s performance against Albania wasn’t pretty, but Vladimir Petkovic will argue that they got the job done so it is unlikely that there will be any tactical changes against Romania. Granit Xhaka will provide the energy in midfield, and Xherdan Shaqiri the creativity. The team won’t press forward too recklessly, however, as Switzerland’s back four is slow and vulnerable if they leave too much space behind.
Romania vs. Switzerland: Odds & Betting Markets
Switzerland’s chances were talked up in some tournament previews, but the team didn’t look that dangerous in its opening game. Granit Xhaka and Xherdan Shaqiri aside, there seemed to be the little energy about their play, and the vigorous pressing game that we had come to expect from them was entirely absent.
It may be that the Swiss players are more comfortable when they can sit back, press their opponents and break quickly, but Romania won’t oblige them, and the onus will be on Switzerland to make the running and break their opponents down.
Against a more dynamic side than Romania, that could cost the Swiss. When exposed without their midfield cover to protect them, the Switzerland centre-backs looked ponderous and uncertain against the limited Albanians, both when opposing forwards were running at them, and when balls were played over the top, and they were forced to turn and face their own goal. Johan Djourou, in particular, had a nightmare.
But based on what we’ve seen so far, I don’t think Romania will show the same ambition or attacking spirit as the Albanians. They were solid, rather than dynamic against France, and I can’t see them creating enough chances to win the game.
They are, however, capable of scrambling a goal, perhaps from a set piece, to earn a draw, and that outcome looks a good bet at odds of 9/4 with Paddy Power.
Odds for Correct Score
Given that Romania kept astonishing eight clean sheets in their qualifying campaign, it might be tempting to back them to keep the score in this game to 0-0, but they will be hard-pressed to do that.
Four of those clean sheets in qualifying games came against Greece and the Faroe Islands, and in the pre-tournament friendlies this spring, the Romanian defence conceded four against Ukraine and one each against Georgia and DC Congo.
Trying to pick the correct score can be a tricky business, but I think a low scoring draw is much more likely than a goalless stalemate, and the odds of 6/1 with BetVictor on 1-1 in the Correct Score market look tempting.
Odds for Total Goals
Given Romania’s defensive strategy and Switzerland’s limitations up front, goalmouth action will be strictly limited in this game, and fewer chances obviously mean fewer goals.
Back under 2.5 in the Total Goals market at 3/5 with 888.Sport.