Antonio Cesaro has been the United States Champion since beating Santino Marella for the title at WWE's SummerSlam, but he has failed to gain any real traction. That isn't his fault as he has been impressive in the ring and has improved on the mic. The blame falls on the shoulders of the writers for not putting him in a feud.
With Hell in a Cell a week away, there simply isn't time for a feud to be built properly between now and then. Cesaro has been given wins over the likes of Brodus Clay, Tyson Kidd and Jason Gabriel as of late, so he has some momentum.
But, fans aren't going to care about him unless he's in a meaningful angle of some kind. Whether there is any reasoning behind it or not, Cesaro has to face somebody at the next pay-per-view.
The options aren't very good as the midcard is lacking when it comes to face depth, but here are the three best possible opponents for Cesaro at Hell in a Cell.
3. Great Khali
After a couple of months away from the ring due to surgery to remove a tumor from his pituitary gland, Great Khali made his return on a recent taping of Saturday Morning Slam. I fully realize that Khali is awful in the ring, but in terms of making Cesaro look as strong as possible, Khali wouldn't be a bad choice.
Having Cesaro face someone he has already beaten at the pay-per-view would be anti-climactic, but at least Khali would be a new challenge. When Cesaro defeated Clay a few weeks ago on Raw with his Gotch-style Neutralizer it was extremely impressive—it displayed Cesaro's immense strength. Doing something similar to Khali would make him look even better.
The match would be a quick one, but when you consider that there isn't any build, that isn't necessarily a bad thing. I wouldn't be in favor of making Cesaro vs. Khali an actual feud, but as a one-off match it would help make Cesaro even more of a physical threat.
2. Sin Cara
Sin Cara and Rey Mysterio are scheduled to face Cody Rhodes and Damien Sandow in a match to determine the No. 1 contenders for the Tag Team Championships on Monday, but most expect Rhodes Scholars to come out on top. If that is the case, then neither Sin Cara nor Mysterio will have anything to do at Hell in a Cell.
Mysterio is trying to get over an illness, so I would let him have the night off, but there is no use wasting Sin Cara as he could provide a good boost to Cesaro. Sin Cara is very popular with the fans and has a contrasting style to Cesaro that would likely make for an entertaining match.
Sin Cara just beat Sandow on SmackDown, so he has a good deal of momentum right now. I see Sin Cara and Mysterio teaming up for the foreseeable future, so a match between Sin Cara and Cesaro would likely be a one-time thing, however, it would be really good for Cesaro.
Sin Cara is probably the most over midcard face on the roster who could possibly face Cesaro at Hell in a Cell, so the creative team can't really go wrong.
1. Jack Swagger
Since the choices on the active roster to face Cesaro are pretty dire, perhaps the WWE will think outside the box.
Jack Swagger has been off for several weeks as he told Raw general manager A.J. Lee that he would be taking a break, but Hell in a Cell would be a great time to bring him back. Perhaps Cesaro can cut a promo degrading the United States, prompting the All-American American to defend his country's honor.
Swagger has been a heel for his entire WWE tenure, but he could really use a change and making him a pro-American face would get him over immediately. Cesaro has been playing the arrogant, European heel a lot better lately and if he continues to lay it on thick then the fans are going to hate him.
American vs. foreigner is the oldest wrestling feud in the book and it's time for the WWE to break it out.
If Swagger is Cesaro's opponent, then I would have Swagger win by disqualification or countout in order to keep the feud going. Having Swagger lose right away would kill his steam, so it would make a lot more sense to have an indecisive result. Cesaro needs a true rival and Swagger could be the perfect fit.