Sweden Vs England: Key Battles
Published : 15 Jun 2012 13:58:57
Tonight's clash in Kiev could see a slightly more open affair where England will need to dominate key areas if they are to get three points.
John Terry vs Zlatan Ibrahimovic
John Terry player profile
Having netted 35 times for AC Milan last season, England will know that Sweden's main threat will come in the form of Ibrahimovic. Zlatan is one of the highest paid footballers in the world and at 6ft 5in he is likely to cause England a torrid time in the air. However, statistics show that Zlatan struggles against English opposition. It's almost 12 hours of football since Ibrahimovic scored a goal for club or country where there has been an English centre half on the pitch. His goals have come every 379 minutes against English opposition which doesn't resemble the form of a world-class striker. Zlatan will definitely pose a threat to England's defence tonight but history tells us we needn't worry as John Terry has had the better of the Swede in the past.
Sebastian Larsson vs Ashley Cole
Sebastian Larsson player profile
Ashley Cole player profile
Larsson had a fantastic debut season at Sunderland this year scoring seven league goals. Fortunately for England he is up against one of the best left backs in the world tonight in Ashley Cole. Larsson will cause problems for Cole tonight as he doesn't try and beat his man he just gets a yard of space, this can be enough for him to get deadly crosses into the box especially for Zlatan. Cole will be wise to Larsson as he has faced him twice this season and will be keen to show him onto his left foot to stop the threatening crosses he can provide with his right peg. If Larsson is kept quiet this could have a massive baring on the supply to Zlatan, which in turn will relieve pressure on the centre half pairing of Joleon Lescott and John Terry.
Andy Carroll vs Jonas Olsson
Andy Carroll player profile
Jonas Olsson player profile
Sweden are set to bring in West Bromwich Albion centre half Jonas Olsson who will be a familiar face to the England side. This may be due to Carroll's height as Olsson stands an inch taller than the Liverpool forward. Encouraging news for England fans as one of Carroll's four league goals last season came against West Bromwich when Jonas Olsson was playing centre half. As England are suggesting to push Ashley Young out wide, he could provide great service for Carroll who will look to dominate Olsson and bring Welbeck into the game. Provided England are solid at the back, two forwards is a very positive move by Hodgson and may help England secure a historic win over the Swedes.
England v Sweden: head to head stats
Why Andy Carroll should start
Sweden V England- view commentary, squad, and statictics of the game live.