Sven Goran Eriksson
It was announced on January 23, 2006, under much controversy, that the England manager, Sven Goran Eriksson, would be leaving his current position of England Head Coach on completion of the FIFA World Cup 2006. Steve McClaren takes over as England manager on August 1.
Sven Goran Eriksson is well respected by fans and managers alike, owing to his tactical awareness, steely determination and unflappable style.
Sven Goran Eriksson was born in Torsby in southwest Sweden on February 5, 1948, and has had an illustrious career as a football manager; beginning from when he ended his playing days due to injury in a Swedish second division side in 1975.
He has had much success at a number of clubs, including: IFK Gothenberg, Benfica, AS Roma, Fiorentina, Sampdoria, and SS Lazio; the latter of which he won the Italian League and Cup Double in 2000.
The amicable Swede joined England
as National Team Coach in January, 2001, and had immediate success, with a 3-0 win over Spain at Villa Park one month after joining the camp. Sven Goran Eriksson then steered England through another four successive wins, making him the most successful starter of the job as England coach.
Eriksson lead England to the Quarter Finals of the FIFA World Cup 2002 in Japan and Korea after a dramatic qualifying campaign; arguably missing out after losing to Brazil.
After the World Cup 2002, came Portugal Euro 2004, where Sven Goran Eriksson’s England easily qualified without even losing a game. They were ousted by Portugal on penalties in the Quarter Finals again, however, but had played some quality football to get that far.
Qualification for Germany FIFA World Cup 2006 was more of an uphill battle than the previous Euro 2004, although England only lost one match, against Northern Ireland of all teams.
Sven Goran Eriksson’s England later beat old foe, Argentina, in a 3-2 friendly, setting themselves up nicely for the last friendlies before the World Cup.
Life after England for Eriksson
With the comments made by Sven Goran Eriksson to a certain national tabloid on certain England Players so close to the finals of a World Cup campaign, his impending departure will no doubt be an instrumental factor in how far England go in the tournament and will play on the minds of fans and the English FA should England fail to make an impression at Germany 2006
Whatever the outcome, it won’t detract from the fact that Sven Goran Eriksson is an outstanding manager with bags of talent who will go on to win many prizes and accolades for whichever team he coaches next.