This is the battle which often doesn’t mean anything. Why? Well simply, both of these sides came one step away from competing for the World Cup title and stopped there. So a third-game place isn’t something very challenging for anybody in that position. Both England and Sweden had high ambitions coming to France, and losing in the semis is truly a great disappointment. So to summarize, whoever bounces back quicker will win this one. The most important thing for both coaches is to recover their players mentally.
England missed a perfect chance to eliminate the USA from the tournament and to dethrone the Americans. They had it all, but somehow, Phil Neville’s girls even had a penalty to tie the match but the captain Stephanie Houghton missed it. That is to be correct, Alyssa Naeher saved that shot. The US goalie denied several more attempts of the English players, and she was the key for Lionesses elimination. It was the first loss in France for England and the second game in which they couldn’t keep a clean sheet. We have to agree that this assembly had the best defensive line in the entire tournament, despite losing against the Americans. Most of these girls were already in this position, four years ago, when they won the third place.
Sweden lost against the Netherlands in the semifinals only after extra times. It was an even game in which neither side had some particular edge. They are considered as the biggest surprise of the tournament, and most of the neutral fans were rooting for this Scandinavian nation. On their way towards the top four teams in the world, they finally defeated Germany, who was the biggest nightmare for the Swedish side over the last two decades. Their only loss here in France was against America in the group stage. This is a well adjustable team who knows how to behave in various situations. There aren’t any characteristic patterns in their efficiency, which could be helpful in our preview.
Head to Head
The last time England and Sweden met was in November last year. It was a friendly international in which the Scandinavians won easily with 2-0. Before that, there was a match at the beginning of 2017, which ended without goals. Four of the latest five head-to-head meetings saw both teams not to score.
We believe that the Swedish team has more motive to play this game. England already won the bronze at the previous World Cup, and their demotivation for this event is massive. If you closely watched their interviews following the match against the USA, you could see that the majority of the girls were emotionally deflated. The entire team and the nation in general expected from them to bring the World Cup trophy home for the first time. On the other side, this generation of Swedish players doesn’t have any notable success. A triumph in this event would mean more for them, which is why we are suggesting to bet on a double chance draw or Sweden in this one. The odds are very solid for something like that. For instance, BetXChange is offering 1.07 for this choice.