Sweden European Championship Record
Group stage: 2000, 2008, 2012
Did not qualify: 1964, 1968, 1972, 1976, 1980, 1984, 1988, 1996
Did not enter: 1960
Total: W5 D5 L7 24:21
Sweden Euro 2016 Qualifying Record
W6 D4 L2 19:12
Sweden Euro 2016 Group Fixtures
13th June @18:00 – Republic of Ireland vs Sweden (Stade de France, Paris)
17th June @15:00 – Italy vs Sweden (Stadium Municipal, Toulouse)
22nd June @21:00 – Sweden vs Belgium (Allianz Riviera, Nice)
Road to Euro 2016
Sweden performed pretty well during the Euro 2016 Qualifying, but they eventually finished behind Austria and Russia, and had to battle their way through the play-offs. Following some disappointing results in international friendlies, Blagult needed a while to rediscover their form and they dropped quite a few points early on, winning just one of first four fixtures, albeit not losing in the process.
However, it was back to back losses to direct rivals Russia and Austria that acted as serious blows to their qualifying hopes. Head coach Erik Hamren, nonetheless, managed to rally the troops ahead of the highly anticipated play-off vs neighbours Denmark, and his side in turn produced two very good performances to secure their place at the tournament finals, with PSG superstar Zlatan Ibrahimovic once again proving decisive. Andreas Granqvist, Jimmy Durmaz, Erkan Zengin and Emil Forsberg also had important roles to play.
Style of Play
Under Lars Lagerback, Sweden relied a lot on rock-solid defence and were not taking too many risks going forward, but the style of play has changed since Erik Hamren took over the reigns some six and a half years ago. The former Rosenborg boss adopted a more positive approach as he wanted his side to start dominating matches, but his biggest achievement was that he managed to get the best out of star player Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
The PSG superstar was not always at his best under Lagerback, but Hamren gave him more responsibility by handing the forward a captain’s armband, while giving him a free role on the pitch that allowed Zlatan to flourish. As a result, the highly rated forward had a key role to play in the Euro 2016 qualifiers, bagging 11 goals in 10 matches to take his country to France, but his teammates have got to be given credit as well.
While Ibrahimovic is given a licence to roam, other members of the starting line-up are incredibly disciplined and work hard for the team’s cause, with excellent team spirit another major advantage of this side. Sweden usually line up in a 4-4-1-1 formation with two banks of four and Zlatan playing behind Marcus Berg, linking up play and also taking every opportunity to shoot from distance and finish off team moves.
Sweden full-backs are not as attack-minded as some of the counterparts, but the team have a very good wing partnership formed by Emil Forsberg and Jimmy Durmaz, who are capable of taking players on, but also work hard in the defensive phase, keeping their positions in a zonal marking style that has long ago become characteristic of all Sweden teams.
Apart from Zlatan, Blagult do lack world-class players, and they do not seem to have the quality to match the best sides in the competition, while injury to playmaker Albin Ekdal is another cause for concern. Sweden back line has been known to switch off at times, as witnessed by the 4-1 home loss to Austria, and having been placed in a very strong group, any lapse in concentration could prove very costly.
- The Zlatan effect
- Hard-working side
- Impeccable tactical discipline
- Perform well under pressure
- Strong wing partnership
- Too reliant on Ibrahimovic
- Costly lapses in concentration
- Full-back positions
Sweden Euro 2016 Starting Line-Up
Missing: Oscar Wendt (overlooked)
Sweden have been placed in a tough group at the Euro 2016 finals, but we believe they can make it to the next stage. Blagult have shown a great deal of promise in the qualifying campaign, having been especially impressive under pressure in the play-offs, and there are no doubts that Zlatan Ibrahimovic and his teammates will be eager to make the forward’s last ever major tournament a huge success.
Blagult are quite strong at the back not that Victor Lindelof has been paired with Andreas Granqvist, while they’ve got enough quality up front to hurt other sides in the group. And with Italy arriving in France with what is quite possibly their worst team ever, we are backing Sweden to qualify for the knockout stages. Erik Hamren’s men will be involved in some close games, but they have performed well under pressure of late and their hard-working approach could prove decisive in the final count.
IST Tip: Sweden to qualify from Group E
Odds: 1.80 (4/5) @Betfair
*Sweden to finish in Group E top 2 is 2.75 (7/4) @WilliamHill
*Belgium and Sweden both to qualify is 5.50 (9/2) @bet365
*Sweden to win Group E is 7.00 (6/1) @Ladbrokes
*Sweden to reach quarter-finals is 4.33 (10/3) @Ladbrokes
*Ibrahimovic to be Euro 2016 top goalscorer is 35.00 (34/1) @888sport
Sweden Euro 2016 Squad:
Goalkeepers: Patrik Carlgren (AIK), Andreas Isaksson (Kasimpasa), Robin Olsen (FC Copenhagen);
Defenders: Ludwig Augustinsson (FC Copenhagen), Mikael Lustig (Celtic), Andreas Granqvist (Krasnodar), Erik Johansson (FC Copenhagen), Victor Lindelof (Benfica), Martin Olsson (Norwich), Pontus Jansson (Torino);
Midfielders: Jimmy Durmaz (Olympiakos), Albin Ekdal (Hamburg), Emil Forsberg (Leipzig), Oscar Hiljemark (Palermo), Kim Kallstrom (Grasshoppers), Sebastian Larsson (Sunderland), Oscar Lewicki (Malmo FF), Pontus Wernbloom (CSKA Moscow), Erkan Zengin (Trabzonspor);
Forwards: Marcus Berg (Panathinaikos), John Guidetti (Celta Vigo), Zlatan Ibrahimovic (Paris Saint-Germain), Emir Kujovic (IFK Norrkoping).
Last updated: 5th June 2016