England and Sweden do not need to be told about the significance of their quarter-final in Samara today.
No matter which team advances, it will be hugely significant due to the fact neither side has made it that far at a FIFA World Cup for almost a quarter of a century.
Should Sweden advance to the semi-finals, it will be the first time since USA 1994, when they finished in third place.
As for England, a last-four appearance in Russia would be their first since Italy 1990, when they finished fourth. Sweden are coming off the back of a resilient 1-0 victory over Switzerland thanks to Emil Forsberg’s deflected goal.
The Three Lions were able to overcome the mental hurdle of conceding a stoppage-time equaliser and defeated Colombia 4-3 on penalties after the match ended 1-1 after extra time, to win the nation’s first World Cup finals shootout at the fourth attempt.
Did you know?
These teams have met 23 times in history and they share seven wins apiece and nine draws. Their first ever match against each other was on 21 May 1923 in Stockholm when England won 4-2.
Their most recent head-to-head was on 14 November 2012 when Sweden won by the same 4-2 scoreline in a match that featured Zlatan Ibrahimovic’s FIFA Puskás Award-winning goal.
Possible line-ups Sweden: Robin Olsen; Emil Krafth, Victor Lindelöf, Andreas Granqvist, Ludwig Augustinsson; Viktor Claesson, Sebastian Larsson, Albin Ekdal, Emil Forsberg; Marcus Berg, Ola Toivonen
England: Jordan Pickford; Kyle Walker, John Stones, Harry Maguire; Kieran Trippier, Dele, Jordan Henderson, Jesse Lingard, Ashley Young; Raheem Sterling, Harry Kane
The match will kick-off at 5:00 PM Kenyan time.
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