African nation make their bow after winning the CAF Under-23 qualifying tournament while Pierluigi Tmi's side gained their place as runners up of the Under-21 European Championship
Ecuele, Dinda, E.Ndong, Ebanega
Ndoumbou H.Ndong, Mandinda, Engongah
Schaer, Klose, Daprela, Rodriguez
Frei, Buff, Wiss, Kasami
Goalkeeper Didier Ovono, FC Lorient’s defender Bruno Ecuele Manga and Charly Moussono of Libreville-based Missile FC have been included as the three over-age players for Gabon and will be central to Claude Mbourounot’s side as they make their debut at the Olympics as CAF Under-23 champions.
The Swiss will be looking to improve upon their runners-up position at the European Under-21 Championship 2011 in Denmark and earn gold in London.
However, manager Pierluigi Tami will be without star players Xherdan Shaqiri and Granit Xhaka, who have both been held back by their new clubs Bayern Munich and Borussia Monchengladbach, respectively, to prepare for the upcoming Bundesliga season.
Wolfsburg golakeeper Diego Benaglio will be central to the national team’s defence, having only conceded once during the side’s World Cup 2010 campaign and will be looking to keep more clean sheets during the Olympic Games.
|DID YOU KNOW?|
- This will be the Switzerland's first appearance back at the Men’s Olympic Football Tournament for 84 years.
- The Schweizer Nati last contested the tournament at the 1928 Games in Amsterdam, but failed to survive the first hurdle in a 4-0 defeat to Germany.
- The greatest triumph in the Swiss association's history was in 1924 in Paris, in which they got to the final. However their opponents Uruguay prevailed 3-0.
- Striker Admir Mehmedi, finished second-top scorer at the European Under-21 Championship 2011 on three goals, behind only Spain's Adrian, who hit five.
- Gabon are making their first ever appearance at the Games.
- Mbourounot’s side will head to London as champions of the CAF Under-23 qualifying tournament.
- The Panthers beat Ivory Coast, Senegal and Morocco on their way to the title.
- Six different players scored for Gabon in qualifying. Their only multiple goal-scorer was Emmanuel Ndong Mba, who grabbed a brace against the Ivorians.