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'A very unpleasant brand of football' - Switzerland star offers unfavourable assessment of Ireland's style

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Switzerland's manager Vladimir Petkovic. Photo: Getty Images

Switzerland's manager Vladimir Petkovic. Photo: Getty Images

AFP/Getty Images

Switzerland's manager Vladimir Petkovic. Photo: Getty Images

Switzerland have turned up the heat on Ireland ahead of tomorrow's Euro 2020 qualifier by criticising the style of football Mick McCarthy's team employs.

The decision by Liverpool star Xherdan Shaqiri last week to snub an international call-up to focus on his Anfield career has caused a major problem for manager Vladimir Petkovic.

Petkovic is under pressure due to his poor relationship with their leading scorer, and Swiss FA officials tried to ban their players from speaking to the media about Shaqiri's absence.

The Swiss squad arrived in Dublin last night to prepare for a game where defeat would leave them nine points behind Mick McCarthy's side. Their veteran goalkeeper, Yann Sommer, is not a fan of Ireland's style.

"Our opponents play a very unpleasant style of football, very hard," Sommer said.

"The Irish want to beat Switzerland. And of course we do not want to lose.

"We lost in Ireland in a friendly three years ago, Ireland are strong from corners and their game is very physical. The Irish are a team with a lot of passion, and we have to fight that."

Irish Independent