Sweden vs South Korea / World Cup – Sweden and South Korea are objectively the third and fourth team by quality in the group F, but the Swedes are hoping that they can eventually be in one of the first two places and qualify in the round of sixteen, while they will the Koreans are certainly aware that they are outsiders, and they will surely give their maximum in each game. The Swedes have eliminated Italy in the playoffs, and this is an indication that they can be very dangerous on this World Cup, although they were pretty bad in friendly matches, as well as South Korea, which, after the arrival in Russia, continued the continuity of placement in the world championships. The last mutual duels between these two national teams were played in 2005 and both friendly matches ended unresolved. Begins: 18.06.2018. – 14:00 CET
After they have missed the previous two World Cups, the Swedes are returning to a big stage and they have done so in a way that they were one of the greatest stories in qualifiers, since they have eliminated the great Italy and thus left them without placement at the World Cup. But the Italians are not the only ones that have failed to qualify at the World Cup because of the Swedes, but the same happened to the Dutch, who were in the same group as Sweden, where France won the first place. Placement in Russia is even bigger success for the Swedes when it is known that they have achieved it without their best footballer in the past ten years, Zlatan Ibrahimovic.
They have shown that they can play well even without him and now they have a great desire to pass the group stage, after they were in the previous two European championships eliminated before the knockout stage. What is worryingly after the brilliant performance against Italy, which has failed to give them goals in friendly matches, so they are without a win in the previous four, having lost twice from Chile and Romania, after which they played draws with Denmark and Peru, both times with a score 0-0. They have only scored one goal in these four games and it is clear that their defence is a better part of the team. A handicap is the absence of midfielder Joey Johnson, a hero of the playoffs, and the advantage may be that they are very experienced.
Probable lineups Sweden: Olsen – Lustig, Granqvist, Lindelof, Augustinsson – Ekdal, Larsson, Claesson, Forsberg – Toivonen, Berg
It's nothing new when South Korea succeeds to qualify for the World Cup because this team has been successful every time since 1986, with the fact that they did not qualify for the 2002 qualifiers because they were the hosts together with Japan. They have reached the semi-finals at this World Cup, and that is their greatest achievement, because after that they are mostly eliminated after the group stage and they had one pass until the round of sixteen. They are now hoping for that they can pass in the round of sixteen, but when we look at rivals in the group, then it is clear how hard it will be. However, what is certain when the Koreans are in question, they will fight the last second in every match and may be an unpleasant opponent.
They were not brilliant in the qualifiers and only in the last round after a draw with Uzbekistan they have managed to secure placement in Russia, and they did not have a good result in friendly matches either. They were mostly defeating their weaker rivals, while they were losing four times, and in the last four duels, they defeated Honduras, but lost from Bosnia and Herzegovina, a team that will not play in Russia and they only played a draw with Bolivia while they were defeated in the last friendly match by Senegal with 2-0. In that duel, they played in their strongest team with the greatest star, striker from Tottenham, Son, who will be the biggest hope in this match.
Probable lineups South Korea: S.G Kim – Yong Lee, M.J Kim, Y.G Kim, J.H Park – S.Y Ki, Koo, S.W Lee, Y.S Lee – Son, Hwang
Sweden vs South Korea PICK
Both teams have played quite badly in the preparatory period and they are not in a particularly good form, and the biggest problem is their efficiency. However, the Swedes are more experienced and we expect them to dominate in this match and achieve a victory, at least minimal.
Pick: Sweden wins
Odds: 2.04 at williamhill (down to 1.94 can be played)