Luzern’s historic success may seem modest with a sole Swiss league title and two Swiss Cups to their name, but having finished fifth in last season’s Raiffeisen Super League and qualifying for the second qualification round of the 2019/20 UEFA Europa League, Die Leuchten are not a team to be taken lightly.
After parachuting into the role in February to take Luzern to a European place, head coach Thomas Häberli will see the 55th Uhrencup as the perfect opportunity for his side to flex their muscles ahead of their fourth European campaign in as many years. They have failed on six occasions this decade to reach the Europa League from the qualifying round, but will be determined to go one better in the coming season.
One man hoping to fire them to European success who will be on show at the 55th Uhrencup is their leading scorer of 2018/19, Nigerian Forward Blessing Eleke. The 13 goal attacker proved a shrewd acquisition in 2018 from Israeli outfit Ashdod, and he has a dangerous supply line to assist him in the shape of Pascal Schürpf and Christian Schneuwly, who were both amongst the top assists providers for the Swiss Super League in 2018/19.
With three qualifying rounds between them and the Europa League, the test of Premier League regulars Crystal Palace will be an effective opener to the 55th Uhrencup to prepare Luzern for the challenges that some of Europe’s best will provide. Eintracht Frankfurt are a more seasoned European opposition who will face the Swiss in their final game, having reached the semi-finals of the Europa League last season under the tutelage of Adi Hütter. Häberli will see both opponents as an opportunity to experiment with his side and test them against clubs from stronger leagues in a bid to prepare them for the challenges to come in Europe.