Swiss perspectives in 10 languages

Football teams vote for change

League director Edmond Isoz has won support for his proposed changes Keystone Archive

Switzerland's top football clubs have backed a plan to bring the country's league system in line with the rest of the world.

Following a meeting at the league headquarters in Bern, club presidents voted in favour of simplifying the current league format, which has been criticised for being too lengthy and too complex.

Since 1986, Swiss league football has involved a complicated two phase system. Currently, four teams from the top division drop out of title contention halfway through the season. The remaining eight sides then go through to a springtime championship round with just half of the points acquired during the autumn.

Slimmed down top division

As a result of Friday’s vote that will now all change. The country’s top division will be slimmed down to ten teams, who will play each of their nine opponents four times.

To appease smaller clubs, Switzerland’s second division has been expanded to include 16 teams. These sides will play their opponents twice to produce a season lasting for 30 matches.

The changes will come into force in time for the 2003/2004 season.

swissinfo with agencies

In compliance with the JTI standards

More: SWI certified by the Journalism Trust Initiative

You can find an overview of ongoing debates with our journalists here. Please join us!

If you want to start a conversation about a topic raised in this article or want to report factual errors, email us at

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR

SWI - a branch of Swiss Broadcasting Corporation SRG SSR