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Survey highlights Swedes' "special relationship" to English football

Published torsdag 9 juni 2016 kl 17.00
Football expert Richard Henriksson: There’s a little brother dynamic at play
(3:05 min)
A 2001 friendly between Sweden and England at Old Trafford, Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT
A 2001 friendly between Sweden and England at Old Trafford, Photo: Fredrik Sandberg/TT Credit: Fredrik Sandberg/TT

If Sweden is knocked out of the Euro 2016, Swedish fans are most likely to support England instead, but England is also the team they most want to beat.

A new survey, commissioned by Swedish Radio's sports department and conducted by the Sifo polling institute, shows that Swedish football fans have a thing for English footie.

"It's fair to say that Swedes have a special relationship to English football. We want them to succeed but it's also the team that we want to beat most of all," Swedish Radio's football expert Richard Henriksson told Radio Sweden.

However, Henriksson doubts England rates - or even cares about - Sweden as much. "There is a kind of little brother dynamic at play here," he said of Swedes’ admiration of English football.

As for the Irish, whom Sweden will be up against on Monday, Henriksson said Swedes do not have much faith in the team going far in France and they do not really support the team, either. However, 10 per cent of survey respondents said they think Ireland has the best supporters in the tournament.

In Swedish Radio’s parallel, anonymous survey of 40 journalists who are covering the Euro 2016 tournament, Irish fans were ranked top. A total 40 per cent of reporters said they think Ireland has the best supporters out of all teams playing in France.

Our journalism is based on credibility and impartiality. Swedish Radio is independent and not affiliated to any political, religious, financial, public or private interests.
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