15 Greatest Swedish Football Players Ever

Who is the best Swedish football player of all time?

Sweden is one of the strongest football countries in Northern Europe. There are many players from this country who play in different big European clubs and won dozens of prestigious awards. Although the Swedish national team has never won any international trophy, this country is still regarded as one of the greatest powers in the world of football.

In this article, I want to present a list of 15 best Swedish footballer from time to time. I created this list based on the player's number of appearances, number of goals, and their contribution to the Swedish national team. Not only that, their achievements at club level were also taken into consideration.

15. Kennet Andersson

Kennet Andersson is a retired striker who was known for his great heading ability. His duet with Giuseppe Signori in Bologna was known as one of the most prolific striker combinations in Serie A. One of his best performances with the Swedish national team occurred in the World Cup tournament 1994, where Andersson managed to bring his country ranked third and he was also awarded with Bronze Shoe, an award given for the third top scorer in the tournament.

14. Marcus Allback

Marcus Allback is a retired striker who has a pretty good finishing ability. This player scored 30 goals in 74 appearances for the Swedish national team. He played in five major tournaments for Sweden from 2002 to 2008. He was positioned as a partner of the Swedish targetman such as Henrik Larsson and Zlatan Ibrahimovic. Unfortunately, Allback always failed to shine while playing in the European top leagues. His performance with Aston Villa, Heerenven, and Hansa Rostock was fairly mediocre, even disappointing.

13. Martin Dahlin

Martin Dahlin was part of a golden generation of Swedish national team in the mid 90s. The striker helped his country to be the third winner of the World Cup 1994 and reached the semi-finals of Euro 1992. In between the two tournaments, Dahlin was awarded as the best Swedish player in the year 1993. His career at the club level was also quite good, especially when he played for Borussia Mönchengladbach. In the club, Dahlin scored 50 goals in 106 appearances and won one DFB-Pokal trophy.

12. Patrik Andersson

Patrik Andersson is a former central defender who often scored from a penalty kick, and play for the Swedish national team for 96 times. This player also briefly played for two of the biggest clubs in Europe, Bayern Munich and Barcelona, although he spent more time sitting on the bench as a substitute. With Bayern, Andersson won two German league titles and one Champions League trophy. This player was also selected as Sweden's best defender in 2001.

11. Gunnar Gren

Gunnar Gren is a retired attacker who is regarded as one of the highly respected players in Serie A. Together with his two fellow countrymen, Gunnar Nordahl and Nils Liedholm, Gren created an attack trio known as the Gren-No-Li. This trio was known as one of the most dangerous offensive trio in the history of AC Milan. Gren was also part of the Swedish national team that reached the World Cup 1958 finals and won the Olympic gold medal in 1948.

10. Roland Nilsson

Roland Nilsson is the third most capped player in the history of the Swedish national team. The defender played in 116 matches and scored one goal. Most of Nilsson's career was spent in the Premier League, where he played for Sheffield Wednesday for five seasons and Coventry City for three seasons. After retiring in 2006, Nilsson decided to become a coach and has trained some of the big clubs in Northern Europe.

9. Olof Mellberg

Similar to Nilsson, Mellberg is also a defender. In a period of twelve years playing for Swedish national team, Mellberg capped 117 times and scored eight goals. He was also trusted to be the captain of the national team for some years. In addition to playing for seven years for Aston Villa, Mellberg also had a career in different big clubs in Europe such as Juventus and Villareal. One of his greatest individual achievement is when Mellberg was selected as the best Swedish player of 2003.

8. Thomas Ravelli

Thomas Ravelli is a legendary Swedish goalkeeper. Until now, Ravelli still holds a record as a player with the second highest number of appearances in the Swedish national team. Over 21 years of playing football, Ravelli only played for clubs in Swedish League, namely Goteborg and Oster. In addition to winning nine Swedish League titles, Ravelli was also selected as the world's best goalkeeper in 1994 after his impressive performances in bringing Swedish national team to reach the third position in World Cup tournament.

7. Anders Svensson

With a total of 143 appearances, Svensson is the player with the most numbers of appearances of all time for Swedish national team. His number of appearances can still continue to grow because until now Svensson has not retired. Svensson main position is a defensive midfielder, but sometimes he can also play as a left-winger. One of the best performance he ever achieved at club level is when he helped Southampton to be an FA Cup finalist in 2003.

6. Tomas Brolin

Brolin is a retired attacking midfielder from Sweden who had tremendous potential to be the world's best player. His career at a young age was very bright, but unfortunately, after entering the age of mid 20s, his performance decreased dramatically. At the age of 23 years old, Brolin helped Parma win a Coppa Italia, a Winners Cup and a UEFA Cup. He also helped Sweden national team claim the third place in the World Cup 1994. His career began to decline when he moved to Leeds United, as he was continuously plagued by injury. Brolin finally had to retire at a fairly young age, 29 years old, due to prolonged injury.

5. Kurt Hamrin

Kurt Hamrin is a legend of Fiorentina and played for Swedish national team striker in the 1950s and 1960s. Hamrin held the record as the all-time leading scorer of Fiorentina for many decades, before the record was finally broken by Gabriel Batistuta. Indeed, his scoring ability is very impressive. Throughout his career, Hamrin played in 472 matches and scored 249 goals.

4. Henrik Larsson

Henrik Larsson is a former striker with remarkable goal-scoring ability. His golden period happened when Larsson played for Glasgow Celtic. With the club, Larsson was able to win four Scottish League titles and became five-time top scorer of this competition. At the end of his career, Larsson joined Barcelona, where he won two La Liga titles and one Champions League trophy. For the Swedish national team, Larsson scored 37 goals from 106 appearances.

3. Sven Rydell

Who is the Swedish national team top scorer of all time? The answer is not Zlatan Ibrahimovic, Henrik Larsson, or Gunnar Nordahl. The player who holds this title is Sven Rydell, a striker who played from 1920 to 1934. His productivity as a striker is very high, where he was capable of scoring 49 goals from 43 appearances. Rydell's last match as a Swedish national team player was also very memorable Sweden, where he was able to score a hat trick that led his team defeat Finland by a score of 7-1.

2. Zlatan Ibrahimovic

Ibrahimovic is an artist of the football field. This player always enlivens a match with great goals and fantastic skills. Ibrahimovic has played for Swedish national team since 2001, and scored 48 goals from 96 appearances. He only needs two more goals to surpass the record Sven Rydell as the Sweden's top scorer of all time. Throughout his career Zlatan has won eight Guldbollen titles, a title given to the best Swedish football player every year.

1. Gunnar Nordahl

Gunnar Nordahl is a legendary striker of AC Milan. Playing in the 1950s, he won two Scudetto and became five-time top scorer of Serie A. With a record of 210 goals in 257 appearances, until now Nordahl holds a record as AC Milan's top scorer of all time. Not only at the club level, the player is also very prolific in scoring for the Swedish national team. Playing from 1942 to 1948, Nordahl scored 43 goals in 33 appearances and helped Sweden won Olympic gold medal in 1948.

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