Sunday 23 September 2018

'Spoilt' England in for 'unpleasant surprise' in World Cup quarter-final, says Sweden legend Håkan Mild

Hakan Mild described Gareth Southgate's young players as 'spoilt' CREDIT: GETTY IMAGES
Hakan Mild described Gareth Southgate's young players as 'spoilt' CREDIT: GETTY IMAGES

Jeremy Wilson

Swedish football legend Håkan Mild has described Gareth Southgate’s young England team as “spoilt”, easy to score against and warned that they are in for “an unpleasant surprise” in Saturday’s World Cup quarter-final.

Mild, who is the current sporting director of Gothenburg and played briefly for Wimbledon, made 74 international appearances and was part of the Sweden team that finished third at the 1994 World Cup.

His year in England was during the early 2000s, just as the supposed ‘golden generation’ were emerging, but he is also unimpressed with England’s new young squad.

Speaking on Swedish state radio, Sveriges Radio, he said: “They think they are so good but they are not. It’s spoilt young people who make a ton of money. The English are easy to score against. You don’t get afraid when you see this team. It suits Sweden well. They do not have the total desperation required.”

Mild also suggested that the added strain of England’s win against Colombia following extra-time and penalties could be significant. “England have just played a long, tough game with extra time and I also think they have a little bit of hubris,” he said. “They think they are going to win and they will get an unpleasant surprise on Saturday.”

England’s Swedish former manager, Sven-Goran Eriksson, also warned that Sweden, who have conceded only two goals in four World Cup matches, will be extremely difficult opponents.

"To score against Sweden is extremely difficult," Eriksson told Sky Sports News.

"They have shown it so many times now. If England think they will have an easy match on Saturday that is a big mistake. I think it will be very difficult.

"England have the players individually to do something special. Kane is one of them, Sterling is another, but when I tell you it is difficult to beat Sweden it is the truth.

"In the World Cup play-off, Italy couldn't score in 180 minutes, Germany only scored [in Group F] with a free-kick at the end."

Online Editors

Sport Newsletter

The best sport action straight to your inbox every morning.

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport