FIFA U-17 WC
Nigeria vs Switzerland 18:00 SS3
Third place playoff
Spain vs Colombia
ABUJA - It takes a certain amount of willpower to become a champion, but it is clearly something Haris Seferovic has in abundance.
The composed marksman has fired the Swiss into the final of the FIFA U-17 World Cup 2009 and is now aiming to go all the way and finish the job today.
“I can’t believe we’re in the final, but the dream isn’t over yet. Now we want the trophy!” said Seferovic, who made time for an exlcusive interview with FIFA.com on Friday.
His positive demeanour says it all, with pure determination radiating from the young Grasshopper Zurich star. And it is exactly the kind of attribute that will be required to knock the seemingly invincible Nigerians off their pedestal in Sunday’s final in Abuja.
The Schweizer Nati, who are taking part in their first ever FIFA U-17 World Cup, booked their place in the decider with a thumping 4-0 victory over Colombia in the semis.
Seferovic, who celebrated his comeback from suspension by scoring in that emphatic victory, believes that his side’s display of individual class paired with physical strength and tactical nous came at just the right time. “We set a new standard in the semis. If we keep playing like that then we’re almost unbeatable.”
The Swiss-born youngster with Bosnian roots is one of coach Dany Ryser’s trump cards and names Swedish international Zlatan Ibrahimovic as his biggest influence.
And just like the Barcelona hitman, coincidentally also of Bosnian heritage, Seferovic boasts the kind of intelligence and instinct for goal that causes nightmares for opposing defenders. With four goals in Nigeria so far, the Swiss No9 is a strong candidate to claim the adidas Golden Shoe, although Seferovic clearly has an even bigger prize in his sights: “Of course I want to win the Golden Shoe, but more important is the World Cup itself. It would be perfect if I could do both.”
As one of the most promising talents at the tournament, the Nigerian back line will be paying the 17-year-old close attention in the final.
Seferovic is the type of player who can make a difference and his thirst for goals could be precisely what is needed to inflict the Golden Eaglets with their first defeat since 2003. “At the moment I’m in top form.
I feel strong and I know that I’ll get my fair share of chances during the match. Things are going well at the moment, that’s why I’m scoring so often,” said Seferovic, who is wearing a glistening earring as a good luck charm.
“We’re not thinking about the fact that the game is against Nigeria. We told ourselves that no matter who we play against, our aim is to win the trophy!”