Group E World Cup 2014

World Cup 2014 Group E

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GROUP E

Switzerland Ecuador France Honduras

[Team Jersey Images © Soccerphile]

Switzerland

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Switzerland have risen consistently in the Fifa World Rankings since they joint hosted Euro 2008. The team is now built around a number of immigrants from the former Yugoslavia, Albania and Turkey such as Gokhan Inler, Xherdan Shaqiri, Josip Drmic, Admir Mehmedi and Valon Behrami. However Switzerland lack a natural finisher and also fail to convince at the back. Former Premiership performers Johan Djourou and Philippe Sendoros are in the squad but may not feature.

Fixtures

Switzerland team jersey kit 1 (c) Soccerphile. Switzerland team jersey kit 2 (c) Soccerphile.

Switzerland Kit 1
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Switzerland Kit 2
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Switzerland v Ecuador 15 June; Brasilia
Switzerland v France 20 June; Salvador
Switzerland v Honduras 25 June; Manaus

Coach

Ottmar Hitzfeld

Record

1950, 1962, 1966, 2010 First Round; 1946, 2006 Second Round; 1934, 1938, 1954 Quarterfinals.

FIFA Ranking

Men to watch

Xherdan Shaqiri and Stephan Lichtsteiner.

Predictions & Latest Odds

We are backing Switzerland to make it out of the group but their game with Ecuador is key.
World Cup 2014 Betting

How they qualified

Switzerland qualified by topping Group E ahead of Iceland and Slovenia.

On the sidelines

Coach Hitzfeld will retire after the tournament.

Analysis

Switzerland Team Profile

Squad

Goalkeepers: Diego Benaglio (Wolfsburg), Roman Buerki (Grasshopper), Yann Sommer (Basel)

Defenders: Johan Djourou (Hamburg), Michael Lang (Grasshopper), Stephan Lichtsteiner (Juventus), Ricardo Rodriguez (Wolfsburg), Fabian Schaer (Basel), Philippe Senderos (Valencia), Steve von Bergen (Young Boys), Reto Ziegler (Sassuolo)

Midfielders: Tranquillo Barnetta (Eintracht Frankfurt), Valon Behrami (Napoli), Blerim Dzemaili (Napoli), Gelson Fernandes (Freiburg), Gokhan Inler (Napoli), Xherdan Shaqiri (Bayern Munich), Valentin Stocker (Basel)

Strikers: Josip Drmic (Nuremberg), Mario Gavranovic (Zurich), Admir Mehmedi (Freiburg), Haris Seferovic (Real Sociedad), Granit Xhaka (Borussia Monchengladbach)


Ecuador

Ecuador rely much on Manchester United's Antonio Valencia, but the winger has had a poor season at Old Trafford. The tragic death of Christian Benitez has also deprived the squad of its top goalscorer. Playing on their home continent is a huge advantage, but Ecuador have problems at the back and the new strike force of Felipe Caicedo and Enner Valencia is yet to convince.

Fixtures

Ecuador team jersey kit 1 (c) Soccerphile. Ecuador team jersey kit 2 (c) Soccerphile.

Ecuador Kit 1
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Ecuador Kit 2
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Ecuador v Switzerland 15 June; Brasilia
Ecuador v Honduras 20 June; Curitiba
Ecuador v France 25 June; Rio de Janeiro

Coach

Reinaldo Rueda

Record

2002 First Round; 2006 Second Round

FIFA Ranking

Men to watch

Christian Noboa.

Predictions & Latest Odds

We predict Ecuador will not get out of the group.

How they qualified

Ecuador came 4th in the South American Qualifying Zone scoring 20 and conceding 16.

On the sidelines

Ecuador are based in Viamao near Porto Alegre in the far south of Brazil.

Analysis

Ecuador Team Profile

Squad

Goalkeepers: Maximo Banguera (Barcelona SC), Alexander Dominguez (LDU Quito), Adrian Bone (El Nacional)
Defenders: Frickson Erazo (Flamengo), Jorge Guagua, Oscar Bagui, Gabriel Achilier (all Emelec), Walter Ayovi (Pachuca), Juan Carlos Paredes (Barcelona SC)
Midfielders: Segundo Castillo (Al-Hilal), Carlos Gruezo (Stuttgart), Renato Ibarra (Vitesse Arnhem), Cristian Noboa (Dynamo Moscow), Luis Saritama (Barcelona SC), Antonio Valencia (Manchester United), Edison Mendez (Independiente Santa Fe), Fidel Martinez (Tijuana), Michael Arroyo (Atlante)
Strikers: Felipe Caicedo (Al-Jazira), Jefferson Montero (Morelia), Joao Rojas (Cruz Azul), Jaime Ayovi (Tijuana), Enner Valencia (Pachuca)


France

France usually provide at a story at the World Cup, whether it was winning on home soil in 1998, Zidane's head butt in the 2006 final against Italy or the players' strike in South Africa in 2010. France certainly have the talent to go far in the tournament and could even be backed as dark horses. Hugo Lloris is an excellent keeper and Frank Ribery and Karim Benzema carry an attacking threat. Paul Pogba and Yohan Cabaye are both goal scorers from midfield. It's in defence where there are doubts but much sought-after Porto centerback Eliaquim Mangala could well provide a shield along with Lverpool's Mamadou Sakho or Arsenal's Laurent Koscielny.

Fixtures

France team jersey kit 1 (c) Soccerphile. France team jersey kit 2 (c) Soccerphile.

France Kit 1
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France Kit 2
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France v Honduras 15 June; Porto Alegre
France v Switzerland 20 June; Salvador
France v Ecuador; 25 June; Rio de Janeiro

Coach

Didier Deschamps

Record

1930, 1934, 1954, 1966, 2002, 2010 First Round; 1938 Quarter Finals; 1982 Fourth place; 1958 & 1986 Third place, 2006 Runners-up, 1998 Champions

FIFA Ranking

Men to watch

Franck Ribery and Paul Pogba have both had title-winning seasons with their respective clubs.

How they qualified

France came second behind Spain in Group I and then beat Ukraine 3-2 in the play offs after losing the first leg 2-0 in Ukraine.

On the sidelines

French coach Didier Deschamps omitted Manchester City duo Gael Clichy and Samir Nasri.

Analysis

France Team Profile

Squad

Goalkeepers: Hugo Lloris (Tottenham Hotspur), Stephane Ruffier (St. Etienne), Mickael Landreau (Bastia).

Defenders: Mathieu Debuchy (Newcastle), Lucas Digne (Paris St-Germain), Patrice Evra (Manchester United), Laurent Koscielny, Bacary Sagna (both Arsenal), Eliaquim Mangala (Porto), Mamadou Sakho (Liverpool), Raphael Varane (Real Madrid)

Midfielders: Yohan Cabaye, Blaise Matuidi (both Paris St-Germain), Clement Grenier (Lyon), Rio Mavuba (Lille), Paul Pogba (Juventus), Moussa Sissoko (Newcastle), Mathieu Valbuena (Marseille)

Strikers: Karim Benzema (Real Madrid), Olivier Giroud (Arsenal), Antoine Griezmann (Real Sociedad), Loic Remy (Newcastle loan from QPR), Franck Ribery (Bayern Munich)

Honduras

Honduras coach Luis Fernando Suarez is back for his second spell in charge of La Bicolor, who have a number of UK-based players in their squad. Solid and workmanlike are the two words that come to mind in describing Suarez's squad of football journeymen, who will look to catch teams on the break with 2 wide forwards in a classic 4-4-2. Jerry Bengtson and Carlo Costly are the two strikers vying for the one striking role. Hull's Maynoe Figueroa is the team's defensive linchpin. It's hard to see Honduras getting out of this group as they have yet to win a game at a World Cup and finished bottom of their group in South Africa 2010, failing to score.

Fixtures

Honduras team jersey kit 1 (c) Soccerphile. Honduras team jersey kit 2 (c) Soccerphile.

Honduras Kit 1
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Honduras Kit 2
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Honduras v France v 15 June; Porto Alegre
Honduras v Ecuador 20 June; Curitiba
Honduras v Switzerland 25 June; Manaus

Coach

Luis Fernando Suarez

Record

1982, 2010 First Round.

FIFA Ranking

Men to watch

Celtic defender Emilio Izaguirre has enjoyed an excellent season in Scotland.

How they qualified

Came third in CONCACAF qualifying behind Costa Rica and the USA.

On the sidelines

Honduras met Switzerland in the last World Cup, playing out a dour 0-0 draw in Bloemfontein.

Analysis

Honduras Team Profile

Squad

Goalkeepers: Donis Escober,  Noel Valladares (both Olimpia), Luis Lopez (Real Espana)

Defenders: Brayan Beckeles (Olimpia), Emilio Izaguirre (Celtic), Juan Carlos Garcia (Wigan), Maynor Figueroa (Hull), Victor Bernardez (San Jose Earthquakes), Osman Chavez (Qingdao Janoon), Juan Pablo Montes (Motagua)

Midfielders: Arnold Peralta (Rangers), Luis Garrido (Olimpia), Roger Espinoza (Wigan), Jorge Claros (Motagua), Wilson Palacios (Stoke), Oscar Garcia (Houston Dynamo), Andy Najar (Anderlecht), Mario Martinez (Real Espana), Marvin Chavez (Chivas USA)

Strikers: Jerry Bengtson (New England Revolution), Jerry Palacios (Alajuelense), Carlo Costly (Real Espana), Rony Martinez (Real Sociedad)