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Sven defends England record

Sven Goran Eriksson has defended his record as England manager and insists the national side are capable of winning the World Cup if they get the slice of luck he believes they deserve.

Last Updated: 05/11/13 at 19:14 Post Comment

Sven Goran Eriksson believes he delivered value for money as England manager

Sven Goran Eriksson believes he delivered value for money as England manager

Eriksson, the first foreign manager to be appointed coach of the England national team in January 2001, was a guest on Sky Sports News on Tuesday to discuss his biography Sven: The Final Reckoning.

And the Swede insisted his record as England manager was much better with hindsight than many had given him credit for at the time.

"It's not bad if you look at it today," Eriksson told Sky Sports News. "At that time it was bad the press thought but today I don't think it's that bad.

"England is a huge football nation and it seems like it is a crisis when we don't win - I still say we don't win the World Cup! It's not that easy to win the World Cup in football today but England has been lately in three, four World Cup quarter-finals and very close.

"In 2002 we lost against Brazil, they won the World Cup then we go out twice in penalty shoot-outs so we are not that far away.

"They can win. I think it's going to be difficult in Brazil but next time it's in Russia so why not? England can win, they need a little bit of luck, we didn't have luck in 2006; Michael Owen injured, Rooney red card when it was 1-1, things like that don't help."

Eriksson's reign as England manager began in January 2001 after the FA doggedly pursued the Swede following Kevin Keegan's resignation after a 1-0 defeat against Germany in the last match played at the old Wembley stadium.

His annual salary of £3m after tax was well-documented and the 65-year-old insisted he delivered value for money when asked if he felt he was worth it.

"I think so," Eriksson said. "That is what a big club in Italy or Spain or England pay to the manager so why shouldn't England pay that kind of money as they do in Italy with the Italian manager.

"When I took the job I was in Lazio and they came over to Rome to see me, we were sitting down and when we came to salary I said pay me what I am earning in Lazio because I think that's fair.

"At that time I was a very successful coach in Italy, I'd just won Serie A, so I think that's fair and I don't know what Capello or Hodgson earn but I'm quite sure that Capello earned more than I did."

However, Eriksson conceded his England side should have done better in the 2006 World Cup in Germany.

"I have regrets from 2006 - I think that no-one was better than we were and we should have done better," Eriksson said. "I should have taken a mental coach for penalty shoot-outs - I didn't do it. I should have done that. That's a big regret I have today."

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