11 Runners up (1958)
Janne Andersson Manchester United defender Victor Lindelof (below) is by far their most experienced player, even though he has only made 17 appearances for the club. But he is one they will rely heavily on. The rest of the squad play in far-flung clubs like
Seattle Sounders, Krasnodar,
Crotone and Waasland-Beveren.
Nearer to home there’s Martin
Olsson of Swansea and
Hull’s Sebastian Larsson.
Lindelof joined United from Benfica but has yet to truly establish himself.
The World Cup could be the perfect window.
Sweden finished second when they staged the finals in 1958, were third in 1950 and also in
1994. World ranked 24, they are dogged rather than spectacular but should never be overlooked. They are in a group with two countries who look much stronger than them and not much is expected.