Death beckons? Ex-England manager, Eriksson, diagnosed with cancer, says he’s got one year to live


Former England manager, Sven-Göran Eriksson, has been diagnosed with terminal cancer, announcing that he has one year to live.

Eriksson revealed that in a “best-case” scenario he had about a year left to live.

According to multiple media reports, Eriksson who managed England for five years before leaving after the 2006 World Cup, stood down from his most recent role as the sporting director at the Swedish club Karlstad 11 months ago due to health issues.

The reports quoted the 75-year-old telling Swedish Radio P1: “Everyone can see that I have a disease that’s not good and everyone supposes that it’s cancer and it is. But I have to fight it as long as possible.

“I know that in the best case it’s about a year, in the worst case even less. Or in the best case I suppose even longer. I don’t think the doctors I have can be totally sure; they can’t put a day on it.”

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The cancer was diagnosed after he collapsed without any warning, having been for a five-kilometre run the day before. He was also told he had suffered a stroke.

“It’s better not to think about it,” he said. “You have to trick your brain. I could go around thinking about that all the time and sit at home and be miserable and think I’m unlucky and so on.

“It’s easy to end up in that position. But no, see the positive sides of things and don’t bury yourself in setbacks, because this is the biggest setback of them all.”

There was an outpouring of support for the former England manager after he revealed the diagnosis with one of his former England players, Wayne Rooney, describing him as “a special person”.

Rooney burst onto the scene at the Euro 2004 having been handed his international debut by Eriksson the previous year.

“Sad news this morning,” the former England striker posted on X, formerly known as Twitter.

“Thoughts are with Sven-Göran Eriksson and his family.

A brilliant coach and a special person. Loved and respected by everyone. We’re all with you Sven, keep fighting.”

The Swede, who had a modest playing career, shot to fame in the early-1980s when he won the UEFA Cup with IFK Gothenburg.

Successful spells with Benfica, Roma, Fiorentina and Sampdoria followed before taking Lazio to their second Serie A title in 2000.

In 2001, he became the first non-British manager of England and oversaw a 5-1 win against Germany in Munich to take England to the World Cup the following year.

He had an exceptional group of players at his disposal – they became known as the “Golden Generation” – but England never made it past the quarter-final stage at a major tournament during his time in charge.

They came close, however, losing narrowly to eventual winners, Brazil, in 2002 before two penalty defeats against Portugal at Euro 2004 and the World Cup two years later.

During the interview with Swedish radio he questioned whether he had made the right decision to leave Lazio for England. “It was a fantastic life (in Italy).

“I thoroughly enjoyed it,” he said.

“But one day, I got a telephone call from England and I made the decision. It has crossed my mind whether it was the right choice. Maybe I should have stayed in Lazio where I was celebrated as a king?”

The England national team’s X account said they were “sending our love, Sven” while former clubs joined in expressing their best wishes to the Swede.

Manchester City said everyone at the club is thinking of Eriksson and sent their “collective support to our former manager and his family and friends, during this time”.

Leicester said “we are all with you, Sven” and Notts County posted that they are “sending love and strength to our former director of football, Sven-Göran Eriksson”.

After his time with England, Eriksson went on to manage Manchester City for one season when Thaksin Shinawatra was the owner in 2007-08 before spells in charge of Mexico, Ivory Coast and Leicester.

He also worked in China between 2013 and 2017.

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