Vladimir Petkovic wants his Switzerland side to show they 'play football just as well' as France

Petkovic's side face Les Bleus in their final group game, and urged his players to prove they can be just as good as their opponents

Vladimir Petkovic wants his Switzerland side to show they 'play football just as well' as France
Vladimir Petkovic | Photo: Getty images

Switzerland head coach Vladimir Petkovic says he wants his side to “show France they can play football,” in the build-up to the Euro 2016 Group A clash in in Lille.

Petkovic, speaking in his pre-match press conference, believes Les Bleus are one of the favourites to win the competition, largely down to their hosting, but has challenged his Swiss players to show their opponents that they can play football “just as well as them.”

The 52-year-old put all the pressure on Didier Deschamps’ side, claiming France are “not 100-per-cent calm” heading into the game, despite them needing just one point to secure top spot in the group having already qualified courtesy of their two victories.

Switzerland have been inconsistent, despite picking up four points so far

Switzerland have picked up four points from their opening two games, making them the most likely nation to qualify for the knockout round in Group A behind France. Romania held Rossocrociati to a draw in match day two, despite Switzerland having the better chances in the game and this was a cause for concern for Petkovic, who claimed his side “must improve” their performances from their opening two games.

Petkovic’s side saw off Albania in their opening game, winning 1-0, although the scoreline should have been much more comfortable. Striker Haris Seferovic missed two great chances to score, while Albania played with ten men for 55 minutes following Lorik Cana’s red card.

Petkovic with under-performaing forward, Haris Seferovic | Photo: BILD
Petkovic with under-performaing forward, Haris Seferovic | Photo: BILD

Memories of World Cup defeat will not play in the minds of the Swiss players

Petkovic was also reminded of Switzerland’s 5-2 defeat to France at the 2014 World Cup in his press conference, but claimed, “we’re not really thinking too much about that,” before adding that his side were “certainly not looking for revenge” for the humiliation in Brazil.

“They can still lose first place to us,” Petkovic pointed out, before concluding his press conference by saying Switzerland will “do everything” to steal top spot from the “favourites” for the European Championship.

A defeat in Lille means Switzerland may have to rely on Albania taking at least a point from Romania. Petkovic’s side are three points ahead of Tricolorii in Group A, but only two goals separate their goal difference total.

Just a point will put Switzerland through to the European Championship knockout round for the first time in the competition’s 56-year history.