Andreas Granqvist – FC Krasnodar’s Swedish warrior looking to return home

FC Krasnodar defender Andreas Granqvist is arguably in his best form ever. In November, he was Sweden’s most important player in their 1-0 aggregate win over Italy in the World Cup qualifiers that sent a shock through the footballing world, as Italy are now set to miss their first World Cup tournament since 1958. Especially in the return 0-0 leg at the San Siro, Granqvist was outstanding, singlehandedly controlling the Swedish defence. Just over a week later, he broke Zlatan Ibrahimović’s … [Read more...]

A look at Russia’s Road to Euro 2016

Last month, Russia qualified for UEFA Euro 2016 in France. This marks the fourth straight time Russia has qualified since 2004 and the fifth since 1996. In addition to the campaigns at Euro 2012 and the 2014 World Cup, this also marks the first time, since 1992, Russia has qualified for three major tournaments in a row. Unlike the World Cup, Russia has a more respectable history at the European Championship. The Soviet Union were the inaugural champions of the tournament in 1960 and reached … [Read more...]

Euro Qualification Preview: Russia – Sweden

Saturday evening Russia will take on Sweden in a crucial qualification match for next summer's European championship. Russia has since the defeat to Austria sacked Fabio Capello and replaced him with CSKA Moscow's Leonid Slutsky who is currently double jobbing. Both Russia and Sweden are trailing the invincible Austrian side, but the second place is enough for a direct spot to next summer's tournament. With four games remaining Russia is almost forced to beat the Swedes if they want to keep the … [Read more...]

Swedish Exports – not just Volvo, IKEA & ABBA

What links CSKA's midfield linchpin Pontus Wernbloom & last season’s joint top RPL goalscorer Wanderson? The answer is the Swedish city of Gothenburg. Both of these impressive player's careers really took off whilst playing in Sweden's second city and they are not the only current RPL players with a Swedish footballing background. Here I will run down some ex-Allsvenskan (Sweden's premier league) players plying their trade in the RPL and put forward some current Swedish based talents who … [Read more...]