After a tight 1-0 victory over Switzerland, Sweden will have a chance to qualify for their first World Cup semi-final since 1994, as they are set to face off against England at the Cosmos Arena in Samara in the third quarter-final encounter. The Blue-Yellow arrived at the final tournament after eliminating Italy in the UEFA playoffs, but it was hard to expect that they can achieve some prominent result without Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who had to skip the World Cup due to some technical issues. However, Janne Andersson’s team displayed great football against Mexico in the third round of the group stage, defeating the CONCACAF side by three goals to nil, thus securing their spot among the top sixteen teams of the tournament, with two wins and a loss. As for England, they had a quite simple task to advance to the round of 16, considering they had Tunisia and Panama in their respective group, with only Belgium regarded as a firm opponent. Therefore, the Three Lions went past the group phase from the second place, with two wins and a loss, and a +5 goal difference. However, already in the first round of the knockout stage Gareth Southgate’s team experienced enormous difficulties playing against Colombia, whom they eventually defeated after a penalty-shoot-out after the game ended in a 1-1 draw.
Sweden will have Sebastian Larsson back and ready for the match after serving a one-match suspension against Switzerland, while Southgate has a minor headache because of a slight injury suffered by Dele Alli against Los Cafeteros.
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