The Swiss are famed for precision but even they cannot get the national team to run like clockwork. Despite having fellow countryman Sepp Blatter in charge of Fifa, Switzerland are unable to plan a World Cup to suit their timings. Switzerland's problem is not that they are bad, but rather that their form has remained static since bowing out of Euro 2008 at the group stage on home soil. True, the Swiss qualified for the World Cup as group winners but they had been given a kind draw and had to recover from an embarrassing opening home loss to a Luxembourg side which included only two professional players.
Furthermore, several of Switzerland's best players have endured injuries and a lack of playing time with their clubs. First-choice forward Marco Streller has been ruled out of the World Cup with a thigh problem, and record scorer Alexander Frei and defenders Johan Djourou and Christoph Spycher have all only recently returned from long-term injuries.
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