• Home
  • Football
  • Sven Goran Eriksson fulfills dream of managing Liverpool in charity match

Sven-Goran Eriksson fulfills dream of managing Liverpool in charity match

Sven-Goran Eriksson says it is "like a dream" to be taking charge of Liverpool for their 'Legends' charity match at Anfield this weekend.

The 76-year-old former England boss, who revealed in January he had been diagnosed with inoperable pancreatic cancer, will be part of the management team as the Reds play Ajax Legends in Saturday's LFC Foundation fundraiser.

During interviews when he revealed his health issues, Eriksson said he had always been a Liverpool supporter and wanted to manage the club.

And on Friday the Swede told a press conference ahead of the charity game: "It's like a dream.

"When I was a manager I always dreamt about Liverpool, but that never happened. It was close once, it was some discussion once, many years ago…it never happened. But now it happens!

"When they asked, I thought it was a joke. I said of course, and then it's charity, which makes it even more lovely.

"'You'll Never Walk Alone' is magic. I'm looking forward to it. I'm very honoured and thankful to Liverpool that they gave me this opportunity.

"I think it must be maybe the best atmosphere in the world, in all big football stadiums I have been to, and part of that is the song when the players come out. The atmosphere is incredible."

Eriksson said his love of Liverpool came from his father supporting the team.

He also said that around 1979, when he was young manager in his homeland, he wrote to the club asking if he could come to watch some training, and in reply received an invitation.

"I saw a game and some training, I was honoured to go into the Boot Room. That was great, fantastic," he said.

"All the training sessions, they were playing one touch, two touches. The quality of the play was incredible, and 'make it simple' the coaches told me. I learned a lot of course."

Eriksson said his father's interest in the Merseyside outfit remains strong, saying: "He will not miss one game on television when Liverpool are playing. He phoned me the other day because he couldn't find the right channel. The amazing thing is this game is going to be on television in Sweden live, so he will see it."

Eriksson will have former Liverpool players Ian Rush, John Barnes and John Aldridge alongside him in the dugout as he oversees a side including Steven Gerrard and Fernando Torres.

Eriksson became the first foreign England manager when appointed in 2001 and subsequently led the team to the quarter-finals of two World Cups and one European Championship.

On his five-year England tenure, Eriksson, who feels Gareth Southgate's team have a "huge chance" of winning this summer's Euros in Germany, said: "If you are the coach or manager of England, that for me is the biggest job you ever can have.

"We didn't win anything, but I was extremely proud and happy every day I had that job because I know it is one of the biggest football jobs you can have in the world. It is very special."

Asked if he missed management, the ex-Lazio, Manchester City and Leicester boss said: "If I said no, I would lie. Of course you miss it.

"But I realise that I am a certain age. It's OK. What I have done, I have done, and I'm happy about that. Now it's over, almost – this will be the last game I suppose. So that's great."

With close to 60,000 tickets sold, there is set to be a record crowd in attendance for what is the eighth annual LFC Foundation match. Previous games have raised over £6.4million.

More Articles