Prediction: Sweden v England - My Arsenal Blog

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Prediction: Sweden v England

Posted on July 06, 2018 by David Nugent

Verdict:  Draw

Best Odds: 23/10

Bookmakers: Bet365

On Saturday afternoon, Sweden and England clash in the quarter-finals of World Cup 2018. Neither has made the last four of a World Cup in recent history, so both will see this as a big opportunity to move into the latter stages of the competition.

Sweden

Sweden have been one of the surprise-packages of World Cup 2018. The Scandinavians needed a play-off against Italy to qualify for the finals. However, Janne Andersson’s side has won three of their four games in Russia. In the last-16 they recorded a 1-0 win over Switzerland courtesy of a goal from Emil Forsberg.

Their recent good results have primarily been down to solid defensive performances, as they have kept clean sheets in five of their last six international matches.

Sweden have a decent recent record against England, winning nine of the last 20 meetings while suffering just four defeats in the process.

Team News

Sweden are without the suspended Celtic full-back Mikael Lustig, while midfielders Jimmy Durmaz and Albin Ekdal are also doubts due to injury. Experienced midfielder Sebastian Larsson is available again after suspension and is likely to replace Gustav Svensson in midfield.

England

England have enjoyed a decent World cup campaign so far. Spirits are high in the Three Lions camp, and Gareth Southgate’s team will be confident of making the semi-finals of the World Cup for the first time since 1990.

The Three Lions needed penalty kicks to see-off Colombia in the last 16 after a 1-1 draw. The draw means that England have now suffered just one defeat in their previous 14 games.

England are yet to keep a clean sheet at the World Cup. However, with Sweden’s main strength in defence, they will fancy their chances of putting that record straight in this clash.

Team News

England have fitness doubts over defender Kyle Walker and striker Jamie Vardy. Ashley Young and Dele Alli both looked doubtful for this one, but both players trained normally on Thursday so should be contention to start once again.

Conclusion

On paper, this game looks set to be a tight one. Sweden are likely to sit back and let England come onto them and then attempt to hit them on the counter-attack.

The Three Lions were not at their best in a feisty clash against Colombia, so can definitely up their game in this clash. For me, this game will end all square in a low-scoring game and then decided on penalties kicks, which could go either way.

Verdict: Draw

Best odds: 23/10

Bookmakers: Bet365

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