Switzerland's 15 Greatest Footballers of All Time

Who is the best Swiss footballer of all time?

Although Switzerland has never won any major trophy in international football competitions, the strength of its national football team absolutely cannot be underestimated. The country has produced many talented footballers who became mainstays of big European clubs, such as Stephane Chapuisat, Ciriaco Sforza, Phillipe Senderos, Xherdan Shaqiri, and Alexander Frei.

When compared to other European countries such as England, France, Italy, Germany, or Netherlands; it is obvious that Switzerland national team is still lagging behind in terms of achievement. However, I believe that Switzerland has a very good prospect to be one of the strongest football countries in the future.

15. Xherdan Shaqiri

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Shaqiri made started debut as a professional footballer at FC Basel in 2009, at the age of 18 years. The player who plays as a winger successfully stole public's attention because of his amazing individual skills and techniques. For three years playing for Basel, he helped the club win three league titles. His career was predicted to be even brighter after Shaqiri moved to Bayern Munich in 2012 for a fee of 11 million euros.

14. Alain Geiger

Alain Geiger is a former central defender who played for Switzerland national team from 1980 to 1996. Although his posture was not too high, he was known as a tough defender. Geiger is the player with the second most caps for the Switzerland national team, representing his country in a total of 112 international matches. At club level, the player won four Swiss league titles with three different clubs; Sion, Servette, and Neuchâtel Xamax.

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13. Hakan Yakin

Hakan Yakin is a former Swiss second striker of Turkish descent. His debut match as a professional player in 1994 was quite impressive, where he managed to score just 18 seconds after entering the field from the bench. He began playing for the Swiss national team since 2000 and retired in 2011. Within the period of eleven years, he represented his country in 87 international matches and netted 20 goals. His best achievement occurred in 2008, when he was elected as the Swiss Player of the Year and became the top scorer of the Swiss League.

12. Valon Behrami

Valon Behrami spent most of his career as a professional footballer playing in Serie A Italy. He joined Genoa in 2003 after being transferred from FC Lugano. His career started to shine when he played for Lazio in 2005, where he appeared regularly as a starter and contributed some important goals and assists for the club. Behrami is known as a complete midfielder who possesses great vision, stamina, and versatility.

11. Philippe Senderos

Senderos was actually a remarkable defender, but unfortunately he is very often hampered by injuries. For seven years playing for Arsenal, he only played in 84 league games. He played a significant role in helping Arsenal win the FA Cup in 2005 when he displayed solid performances as a center-back, replacing Sol Campbell. At national team level, Senderos represented his country in two World Cups and one Euro Championship tournament.

10. Patrick Müller

Patrick Muller is part of the golden generation of Olympique Lyonnais that dominated Ligue 1 in the first decade of the 21st century. Although he was more often used as a substitute, Muller had na important contribution in helping the club win five consecutive Ligue 1 titles. At national team level, he also performed quite consistently, represented his country in 89 international matches and scored three goals. He ended his career as a professional footballer in 2010 at AS Monaco.

9. Gökhan Inler

Together with Marek Hamsik, Inler formed a combination that made the midfield line of Napoli to be one of the strongest in Serie A in the last three years. He is a hardworking anchor midfield who possessed high stamina, and equally good in defending and attacking. At Napoli, Inler won two Coppa Italia in 2012 and 2014. He made his debut for the Swiss national team in 2006 and included in the 2010 World Cup squad.

8. Kobi Kuhn

Not only successful as a football player, Jakob "Kobi" Kuhn was also known as a respected football managers. He is a legendary player of FC Zurich who joined the club in the 1961 to 1977 period. Playing as a midfielder, Kuhn was appointed to be the team captain for several years and presented six Swiss league titles for the club. Throughout his career, he netted five goals in 63 games for Switzerland national team.

7. Johann Vogel

Johann Vogel was PSV Eindhoven mainstay midfielder in the early 2000s. Together with Mark van Bommel and Phillip Cocu, he formed a solid midfield combination, the one that was considered the strongest in Eredivisie. During six years joining the club, Vogel won four Eredivisie titles, three Johan Cruijff-Schaal trophies, and one KNVB Cup. Not only that, he even received Dutch Footballer of the Year award in 2001.

6. Ciriaco Sforza

Ciriaco Sforza was the star of the Swiss national team in the mid-1990s. In addition to playing as a midfielder, Sforza was also often positioned as a sweeper. His best performance occurred in the 1997-98 season, where he helped Kaiserslautern win the Bundesliga. He repeated the same feat in 2001 with Bayern Munich, although at that time he was more often used as a substitute. Throughout his career, Sforza represented his country in 79 international matches and scored seven goals.

5. Kubilay Türkyilmaz

With a total of 34 goals, Kubilay Türkyilmaz is the second top scorer of all-time for Switzerland national team. This player became the number one striker in his country in the 1990s, representing his country in the Euro 1996. In the tournament, Türkyilmaz refused to play in the match against Turkey, which is the country where he was born. His best achievement at club level is winning two Swiss League championships with Grasshopper and a Turkey League title with Galatasaray.

4. Heinz Hermann

Heinz Hermann is a midfielder who played in the 1977-1999 period. With a total of 118 appearances, he is a player with the highest number of caps for his country. Hermann is regarded as one of the Swiss legendary players, especially considering his success in winning Swiss Footballer of the Year award for five consecutive years. Throughout his career, he claimed seven Swiss League titles with three different clubs; Grasshopper Club Zürich, Neuchâtel Xamax and FC Aarau.

3. Alexander Frei

With a total of 42 goals that he scored in 84 matches, Alexander Frei is Switzerland national team top scorer of all time. The striker had started his career in 1997 and showed his performance in 2001 when playing for Servette FC. Frei also played outside Switzerland at Rennes and Borussia Dortmund. At FC Rennes, he became a French League top scorer of the 2004-05 season. When he returned to play in the Swiss League with FC Basel in 2009, Frei underwent the best period of his career. He helped his club win the Swiss League for four consecutive years and became the top scorer of the tournament twice.

2. Stephan Lichtsteiner

Lichtsteiner is part of one of the best Juventus teams of all time that dominated the Serie A competition in the last three seasons. Signed from Lazio in 2011, Lichsteiner showed a solid performance as a right-back. His position is almost irreplaceable and he is also very rarely absent. He is one of the key elements that help Juventus claim the Serie A title for three consecutive seasons. Due to his incredible stamina and work-rate, Lichsteiner is nicknamed "Swiss Express" by the club's fans.

1. Stéphane Chapuisat

Stephane Chapuisat is a former striker who deserves to be name as the best Swiss footballer of all time. He had important role in helping Borussia Dortmund win two Bundesliga titles and one Champions League trophy in the mid-1990s. Not only that, he also represented his country in the 1994 World Cup as well as 1996 and 2004 European Cup. During 15 years playing for Switzerland national team, Chapuisat netted 21 goals in 103 appearances.

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