European Football

Is Swiss football Europe’s most entertaining?

Alps

ON Saturday August 20, Young Boys of Bern thrashed Lausanne 7-2 in the Stade de Suisse. It was entertaining, if error-strewn stuff. The crowd, 15,000 – more than 10% of the Swiss capital’s population was sent home happy, apart from the small gathering of Lausanne fans perched in the top corner of the ground.

I’ve seen two games in Switzerland in just over a year and they’ve yielded 16 goals (FC Zurich 4 Grasshopper 3 was the other game).

On the weekend of August 20-21, the Swiss Super League saw 22 goals in its five games, an average of 4.4 per game. On the same weekend, the English Premier averaged 2.2 per game, Ligue 1 2.5, Italy’s Serie A 3.2 and La Liga 4.13 per game.

Certainly compared to the “big five” leagues, Swiss football generates more excitement than its more celebrated neighbours. In 2015-16, Switzerland averaged 3.14 goals per game, compared to 2.82 in Germany, 2.74 in Spain, 2.70 England, 2.58 Italy and 2.53 France.

Goals per game in Europe (selected)

  2015-16 2014-15 2013-14
Austria 2.65 2.93 3.31
Belgium 2.81 2.86 2.71
Bosnia & Herzegovina 2.02 2.38 2.46
Bulgaria 2.20 2.55 2.68
Croatia 2.28 2.88 2.86
Czech Republic 2.82 2.69 2.80
Denmark 2.77 2.41 2.74
England 2.70 2.57 2.77
France 2.53 2.49 2.45
Germany 2.82 2.75 3.13
Greece 2.26 2.48 2.54
Hungary 2.44 2.45 2.76
Italy 2.58 2.69 2.73
Netherlands 2.98 3.08 3.20
Northern Ireland 2.97 3.15 3.12
Poland 2.63 2.67 2.66
Portugal 2.72 2.49 2.37
Romania 2.38 2.29 2.38
Russia 2.45 2.43 2.55
Scotland 2.81 2.61 2.75
Serbia 2.50 2.32 2.29
Slovakia 2.65 2.68 2.86
Slovenia 2.44 2.53 2.68
Spain 2.74 2.66 2.75
Switzerland 3.14 2.87 2.89
Turkey 2.70 2.85 2.64
Ukraine 2.68 2.66 2.64

It may be a little “never mind the quality”, but Swiss football – on the evidence of what I’ve seen – is entertaining, a little happy-go-lucky and capable of producing excitement. With a slightly worrying trend towards dull football emerging in top European leagues, there are far worse places to watch the game.

www.gameofthepeople.com

Categories: European Football

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1 reply »

  1. The 2.7 goals per game of the Premiership compares with the the 2.79 in the first season of 3 points for a win.

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