Shaqiri: Switzerland can beat France

The Bayern Munich winger was over the moon with his side’s win versus Ecuador and has now set his sights on Les Bleus’ scalp

By Stefan Coerts in Brasilia

Xherdan Shaqiri is brimming with confidence following Switzerland’s hard-fought 2-1 win over Ecuador in Sunday’s Group E game at the Estadio Mane Garrincha in Brasilia and is optimistic about his side’s chances of beating France in their second match.

Ottmar Hitzfeld’s men were trailing 1-0 at half-time against the South Americans following Enner Valencia’s successful header in the 22nd minute, but Admir Mehmedi restored parity shortly after the interval before Haris Seferovic eventually helped the Swiss to the full three points with his stoppage-time winner.

“It’s a very good feeling to have won the game like this. This was a very important game and we are all very happy,” Shaqiri told Goal.

“It’s great for the team when you play at the World Cup and get a result like this in the first game. This gives the team a boost for the second and third group games. So we are delighted that we won in the end.”

Switzerland endured a difficult first half before they eventually turned things around and the Bayern Munich winger was quick to admit things didn’t go according to plan in the opening 45 minutes.

“We played really bad in the first half. We misplaced a lot of passes and lost possession too often. We didn’t play our own game.

“The coach had a good talk at half-time and then in the second half we were a completely different team. We dominated the game and created a lot of chances. We are very proud that we turned things around and won the game.”

Hitzfeld’s men take on favourites France in their second game on June 20, but Shaqiri has insisted that Switzerland don’t fear the 1998 World Cup winners.

“France are a top team in our group and it will be a very difficult game for us. But it will be tough for France as well. We are a very good team.

“Before the World Cup, we beat Germany and Brazil, so we have shown that we can beat big teams. We want to play our own game against France and I can hope we will win.”