Rumori di Spogliatoio

Switzerland vs. Estonia, the precedents

Angelo PalmeriComment


It is taking 22 years for Estonia and Switzerland to come together again. It was the 17th of November 1993 when an Estonian team led by then coach Uno Piir took ‘La Nati’ in Zürich at the Hardturm Stadium in front of 20,000 people.

Despite resisting more than thirty minutes, Mart Poom had to let the first goal in on 32’ minutes by VfB Stuttgart stiker Adrian Knup.

It was the start of another rain of goals pouring onto the poor ‘Sinisärgid’ as the full-time whistle by Zoran Petrovic (still Yugoslavian referee!) gave Switzerland a 4-0 win, three points in the WC ’94 qualifying group which meant a ticket for the USA. It was a sad farewell for coach Piir, at his last game after more than one year. Estonia collected only one point during that campaign.

The home game in Tallinn (16th of August 1992) was even worse as Roy Hodgson’s side bagged 6: two braces (again Knup and Stefan Chapuisat) Georges Bregy and Ciriaco Sforza.

Dzintar Klavan, father of Ragnar (Juha Tamminen)

Dzintar Klavan, father of Ragnar (Juha Tamminen)

In Zürich’s confrontation both Ken Kallaste’s father, Risto, and Ragnar Klavan one, Dzintar were part of the XI fielded by Piir (Dzintar was not on in Tallinn).

A 10-0 aggregate for ‘La Nati’ gives Estonia already a task: scoring a first historical goal against Switzerland.

The game in Tallinn was Estonia’s first official qualifier game (UEFA/FIFA) after regained independence (1991) and was officiated by Polish Michal Listkiewicz who later on took the role of Polish FA president (1999-2008).

(sources: 'Estonian Football 100 years', Estonia FA website)