Sweden: The Ultimate Euro 2020 Preview
Sweden: The Ultimate Euro 2020 Preview
90 Minutes At A Time
Having won just two of their eight matches in 2020, Sweden have turned the tables and enter Euro 2020 having conceded only one goal in their five consecutive wins so far in 2021.
Placed in a tough but manageable Group E, Sweden will have high hoped of reaching the knockout stages for a second consecutive tournament, having enjoyed a memorable run to the quarter finals of the 2018 World Cup.
Group E: Spain, SWEDEN, Poland, Slovakia
Captain: Andreas Granqvist
Manager: Janne Andersson
FIFA Ranking: 18
Best Finish: Semi-finals – 1992
Spain v SWEDEN – 14 June, 17:00 (BST). La Cartuja, Seville, Spain
SWEDEN v Slovakia – 18 June, 14:00 (BST). Krestovsky Stadium, Saint Petersburg, Russia
SWEDEN v Poland – 23 June, 17:00 (BST). Krestovsky Stadium, Saint Petersburg, Russia
Victories over Romania, Faroe Islands and Malta were enough for Sweden to claim second place in qualification Group F, though they failed to win any of their four fixtures against Spain or Norway. Mainz forward Robin Quaison top scored for the Swedes (5), who finished with 23 goals scored and nine conceded.
Goalkeepers: Karl-Johan Johnsson (København), Kristoffer Nordfeldt (Gençlerbirliği), Robin Olsen (Everton)
Defenders: Ludwig Augustinsson (Werder Bremen), Pierre Bengtsson (Vejle), Marcus Danielson (Dalian Yifang), Andreas Granqvist (Helsingborg), Filip Helander (Rangers), Pontus Jansson (Brentford), Emil Krafth (Newcastle United), Victor Lindelöf (Manchester United), Mikael Lustig (AIK)
Midfielders: Jens-Lys Cajuste (Midtjylland), Viktor Claesson (Krasnodar), Albin Ekdal (Sampdoria), Emil Forsberg (Leipzig), Dejan Kulusevski (Juventus), Sebastian Larsson (AIK), Kristoffer Olsson (Krasnodar), Robin Quaison (Mainz), Ken Sema (Watford), Mattias Svanberg (Bologna), Gustav Svensson (Guangzhou)
Forwards: Marcus Berg (Krasnodar), Alexander Isak (Real Sociedad), Jordan Larsson (Spartak Moskva)
Danger Man – Emil Forsberg
A tricky attacking midfielder, Emil Forsberg will hope to be the link between a solid base and an exciting set of forwards.
A regular with Red Bull Leipzig since their days in the 2. Bundesliga, Forsberg has become a top talent, capabale of creating and scoring goals. While the attackers are more likely to be on the score sheet, Forsberg’s creativity is key if Sweden are to have a successful tournament.
One to Watch – Dejan Kulusevski
Perhaps not too well known outside of Italy and Sweden, Juventus winger/midfielder Dejan Kulusevski will hope to feature in his first major tournament at Euro 2020.
Among a trio of 21-year olds in Sweden’s squad along with Alexander Isak and Jens Cajuste, Kulusevski will be hoping for a positive performance this summer following a disappointing first campaign with his club.
Kulusevski tested positive for Covid-19 on June 8th and will definitely miss Sweden’s opening Group E match against Sweden, though he is expected to be available following that.
Premier League Representation
Robin Olsen, Victor Lindelof, and Emil Krafth are the three Premier League representatives in Sweden’s 26-man squad, though Pontus Jansson and Ken Sema will appear in the top flight next season having won promotion with Brentford and Watford respectively.
Route to the Final
- If Sweden top the group, they will play the team who finish third in Group A, B, C or D.
- If Sweden finish second, they will face the team who finish second in Group D (England, Croatia, Scotland, Czech Republic)
- If they finish as one of the four best third place teams, they will play the winner of either Group B or C.
After the second round, the draw will depend on which third place teams qualified for the knockout stages.
- Sweden reached the semi-finals in their tournament debut at Euro 1992, but have never won a knockout tie at a European Championships.
- Had Zlatan Ibrahimovic not missed out through injury, he would have been the oldest player at the tournament.
- Sweden have only ever faced one of their Group E opponents at a European Championships before – Spain in 2008.