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Swiss Challenge League
Swiss Challenge League

The Swiss Challenge League or Challenge League is the second highest tier of the Swiss football league system. Ten teams play in the Challenge League. The winners of the league are promoted to the Super League, while the bottom team is relegated to the 1. Liga Promotion.

As of 2018, Liechtenstein's FC Vaduz plays in the Challenge League, as Liechtenstein clubs play in the Swiss league structure.

The Challenge League is partially professional. In 2011, about half the players in the Challenge League worked additional jobs in addition to playing football. Unlike other countries, Switzerland does not have a distinction between professional and semi-professional football.[3]

Participating clubs 2018/2019


The league was named Nationalliga B until 2003 when it was restructured and changed to the "Challenge League."

During the Nationalliga B era, the top clubs were "promoted" into a round robin playoff with the lowest teams in the Nationalliga A to determine promotion and relegation. From 2003 to 2012, the second placed team entered a two-legged playoff against the 9th placed team in the Super League, with the winner playing in the higher division next season. In 2012, with the creation of the 1. Liga Promotion, the league was reduced to 10 teams in a 1-up 1-down promotion/relegation format, scrapping the playoff.

1 FC Lugano and FC Lausanne-Sport went bankrupt which meant that no team was relegated due to their league position. FC Sion were not awarded a license for the 2003-04 season resulted in an extra team being promoted.

The league statistics of the Challenge League area:[4][5]

See also

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