Football: History, symbol and tactics: a promising Swiss Cup final

PostedMay 14, 2022, 2:49 p.m.

In an opposition of general styles, Saint-Gall and Lugano can put an end to decades of waiting on Sunday at the Wankdorf (2 p.m.).

Between Saint-Gallois and Luganais, more than a border.

Freshfocus

After swearing to the eternal that no contact between him and Lausanne-Sport was established, Uli Forte cringed. Nothing to do with the draw that his Yverdon Sport had just conceded in Neuchâtel, nor even with the rumors that send him to replace Alain Casanova at La Tuilière. No, in the corridors of La Maladière on Tuesday, the technician looked unsure of himself when the subject of the Swiss Cup final appeared. “I fear for Saint-Gall,” grimaced the former Brodeurs coach (2008-2011). “I see them rushing to the attack, taking the wall that Lugano will have erected and being had behind.” The scenario that Yverdon had failed to outline in the semi-final.

Here lies all the opposition of styles which promises to illuminate the Wankdorf on Sunday. St. Gallen furia and intensity on the left, Luganese compactness and verticality on the right. If she could be shunned on the Romand side, the final promises. Symbolically, historically, tactically. “Lugano has planned to modify its eternal defense at five,” warns Maurizio Jacobacci, the man still at the helm of the team last season. For a last minute bluff? “It seems to me rather to be a necessity of men. Mijat Maric’s injury is a game-changer. Either Olivier Custodio goes down in central defense, as has already been done, or the line goes to four. For a final, it is normal to want to favor the idea of ​​placing the best players in their preferred position.

The Ticino have used their last two Super League outings to complete the change. As if to better distance themselves from the two cumbersome suitcases they are dragging: these two defeats in 2022 against the green rival, without scoring a single goal (0-2 and 3-0). “Reducing the spaces in defense, preventing Jérémy Guillemenot and Kwadwo Duah from taking depth, in short disturbing the established plan: that’s their whole challenge.”

eternity will end

But do we detach ourselves so easily from our past? Spontaneously, Maurizio Jacobacci thinks back to the pain of the quarter-final loss to Lucerne last season. This penalty, which was to take everyone to penalties, missed at the last minute. This feeling that everything stops from one moment to another. On the St. Gallen side, it’s the same for Giorgio Contini. He was on the pitch on June 1, 1998, when Lausanne-Sport “stole” the title from FCSG. “It’s a trauma. You feel that people, that the city is already preparing for the coronation, sighs the current Grasshopper coach. Léonard Thurre had equalized in the 90th. LS won on penalties.

“The Wankdorf will be magnificent. Green and white on one side. Black and white on the other. It will be something to see.”

Maurizio Jacobacci, coach of FC Lugano between 2019 and 2021.

For ages, Luganais and Saint-Gallois have been waiting. The last hour of glory was 1993 for the former… 1969 for the latter. Eternity will end in one camp for the other Sunday. “The merit of the course goes to Lugano”, poses Giorgio Contini. But will having beaten two Super League clubs earlier in the adventure really weigh heavily when it comes to the fight? All questions are good to ask at a time when the suspense is mounting.

Maurizio Jacobacci (left) and Giorgio Contini in April 2021, when the first led Lugano and the second Lausanne-Sport.

Maurizio Jacobacci (left) and Giorgio Contini in April 2021, when the first led Lugano and the second Lausanne-Sport.

freshfocus

Maurizio Jacobacci even adds poetic notes. “The Wankdorf will be magnificent. Green and white on one side. Black and white on the other. It will be something to see.” He is already holding his ticket, VIP, so as not to miss any of the debates. Through the heart, it will be more black than green. “I have wonderful memories of my two years in Lugano. And then, I still have very affectionate ties with the staff and the players. In other words, he will be part of the 10,000 Ticino residents expected in numerical inferiority in Bern. “Like what, when there is an important issue, they know how to mobilize.” Reference to the terrible average of Cornaredo, and its less than 3,000 spectators per match.

Might as well see it as a sign. What if the grand finale escaped all logic?

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