Russia 2018 World Cup preview: Sweden vs England

England are preparing for their biggest game in over a decade as they face Sweden in the World Cup quarter-final on Saturday at 3pm.

Referee: Kuipers B. (Ned)
Venue: Cosmos Arena (Samara)

07.07.2018              15:00

Image result for russia 2018 world cup sweden vs england

In their fourth-ever World Cup (WC) quarter-final, and their first since 1994, Sweden take on nine time quarter-finalists England at the Cosmos Arena in Samara. Both teams are on the hunt for their first semi-final in over 20 years.
Sweden have gone from strength to strength since losing to Germany in the group stage, and looked solid as they dispatched sixth-ranked Switzerland in the Round-of-16. Tight at the back, they’ve now kept a clean sheet in six of their last seven matches.
England, however, will challenge that statistic. A youthful side has scored nine times in four matches so far, and finally got the experience of winning a WC shootout last round against Colombia. A vital psychological boost, no doubt!
The Three Lions’ (ENG) defeat in the final group stage match against Belgium is their only loss in their last 14 matches. Each of the two previous meetings between Sweden and England in WC finals (both being group stage matches) have ended in a draw.
The Three Lions’ (ENG) defeat in the final group stage match against Belgium is their only loss in their last 14 matches. Each of the two previous meetings between Sweden and England in WC finals (both being group stage matches) have ended in a draw.

Players to watch: In centre back Andreas Granqvist (75 caps), the Swedes have a man who has marshalled his teammates well, with the backline conceding just 0.16 goals per game in the last six.Image result for russia 2018 world cup granqvist kane

England, as ever, will have the indomitable Harry Kane (six goals in three WC matches) as their own captain, and his duel with Granqvist will be key to the result.
Stat attack: Sweden have scored two or more goals in just one of their last 13 matches.

Team news

Jamie Vardy could not play a full part in training on Friday due to the groin strain suffered in the win over Colombia, taking part in his own recovery exercise, but Southgate suggested he may be ready to play a part pending a fitness test on Saturday morning.

The England boss has, however, attempted to allay concerns over the fitness of Dele Alli, Ashley Young and Kyle Walker.

Image result for russia 2018 world cup sweden vs england preview

Mikael Lustig is suspended for Sweden, but all other members of the squad have trained, despite a couple of injury niggles threatening to unsettle Andersson’s line-up.

Opta stats

This will be the 25th meeting between these sides. England have won eight to Sweden’s seven, with nine draws.

Both of the previous World Cup meetings between Sweden and England have finished level, with a 1-1 draw in 2002 and a 2-2 in 2006 (both in the group stages).

Sweden are competing in their fifth World Cup quarter-final – they’ve progressed to the semi-final in three of their previous four (1938, 1958 and 1994), losing only in 1934 against Germany.Image result for russia 2018 world cup sweden vs england preview

England have reached the World Cup quarter-final for the first time since 2006, when they lost on penalties to Portugal. They’ve not progressed beyond this stage since 1990, when they beat Cameroon 3-2.

England have only progressed from two of their eight previous World Cup quarter-final appearances, doing so in 1966 and 1990.

Eleven of Sweden’s last 14 goals at the World Cup have been scored in the second half, including five of their six goals at this tournament.

Five of England’s last seven matches (in all competitions) have seen both sides score (BTTS).
Sweden hold a slight edge in the H2H record: W4, D6, L2. Sweden’s last competitive win came in September 1998 (2-1, in a Euro 2000 qualifier)
Three of the last four H2H encounters have produced over 2.5 goals.
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