Throughout his career as a footballer, he played for FC Zurich in the midfield apart from a two-month trip to city rivals Grasshopper-Club. He won six times as 1962-1977 the Swiss Championship five times and the Swiss Cup. For the national team, he completed 63 internationals.
His great faithfulness to FC Zurich but prevented an international career, which held its visibility within national borders. The success of the national team also kept within certain limits. Although you could qualify with director Kuhn twice for the World Cup ( 1962 Chile and 1966 in England), but they lost on both occasions all games if also partly scarce. However, he was at the 1966 0:5 defeat against Germany ( first group match ), together with another service provider the team ( Werner Leimgruber ) not there, because he was not prepared for overstepping the " curfew " as punishment before the game by the coach. Thus Jacob Kuhn was denied for various reasons the attention of a wider international audience. After all, he reached with FC Zurich at the beginning and end of his career the semi-finals of the European Cup of Champions (1964, resigned against Real Madrid and 1977, resigned against Liverpool ).
Before his appointment as national coach, he worked successfully as coach of the U21 national team. His strategy is to seek success with the young, motivated players who want together form a unit. In addition, he can obviously empathize with the situation of maturing, young players and so assist their maturation process. He also seems to have a sense of when a young player is ready to take on more responsibility. He nominated in recent years many young players and also did not hesitate to part by established players that threatened to jeopardize this harmony ( as Ciriaco Sforza ). He also succeeded again and again to give young players like Tranquillo Barnetta, Valon Behrami, Philippe Senderos etc. the confidence thanked them with excellent services him.
Since 2001, the coaching reins for the so-called A-Team, Kuhn reached his first goal: As group winners, the team qualified for the 2004 European Championships in Portugal, where they face but then the group stage after two defeats ( against France and England) and a draw ( Croatia ) finished in last place. Two playoffs against Turkey (2-0 in Bern; 2:4 in Istanbul) in November 2005, he led the team to the 2006 World Cup in Germany, where it reached the knockout stages. In recognition was inaugurated (with permission of Zurich ) in Wiedikon, home of Kobi Kuhn, the non- official " Kobi Kuhn Place World Cup 2006» November 19, 2005. In October 2006, Kuhn announced to resign after the 2008 European Championships as national coach. On December 17, he was elected to the Swiss coach of the year, on 13 January 2007 on the Swiss of the Year.
On 15 June 2008, he played his last game as coach of the national team. The Switzerland won the last group match against Portugal 2-0. After the final whistle, the outgoing coach Jakob Kuhn was celebrated with a banner of the team with the words "Thanks Kobi " and chants of the fans, " Kobi National ». This resulted despite the retired Swiss national team to an emotional end of Euro 2008 for the host. Successor of Kuhn was Ottmar Hitzfeld.