Larsson To Face Three Of His Team-Mates
By Tott Dixon - Seaham
Updated Wednesday, 13th March 2013
Four Sunderland players have been called up for next week's crunch World Cup qualifiers.
Seb Larsson will play for Sweden squad in their against the Republic of Ireland, in Stockholm, on Friday, March 22.
Larsson could face three of his Sunderland team-mates, with John O’Shea, James McClean and Keiren Westwood all included in Ireland’s provisional 29-man squad.
Sweden are just a point ahead of Ireland in Qualifying Group C, with both countries vying for second slot behind leaders Germany.
Ireland then host Austria in another qualifier in Dublin on Tuesday, March 26.
Sweden’s last qualifier was a dramatic 4-4 draw with Germany, while the Republic beat the Faroe Islands 4-1 in their previous Group C match.
# Team Pl W D L F A Pts +/- Odds
1 Germany 4 3 1 0 15 6 10 9
2 Sweden 3 2 1 0 8 5 7 3
3 Republic of Ireland 3 2 0 1 7 8 6 -1
4 Austria 3 1 1 1 5 2 4 3
5 Kazakhstan 4 0 1 3 1 8 1 -7
6 Faroe Islands 3 0 0 3 2 9 0 -7
GERMANY 4 SWEDEN 4
(*Seb Larsson played for 80 minutes)
Four goals in less than half an hour earned Sweden an unimaginable draw against Germany in a dramatic World Cup qualifier in Berlin.
Miroslav Klose moved closer to becoming Germany's all-time top goalscorer with a double early on before Per Mertesacker added a third for the hosts before half time.
Once Mesut Ozil made it 4-0 early in the second half, Germany's 14th consecutive win in qualifying competitions seemed to be in the bank, but they had not counted on such a dramatic revival.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic and Mikael Lustig got the comeback under way in the 62nd and 64th minutes before Johan Elmander brought them back to within a goal with 14 minutes left to play.
The stage was then set for Rasmus Elm to grab an equaliser in the third minute of stoppage time to earn Sweden a precious draw and silence the Olympiastadion at the end of one of the most dramatic evening's in the stadium's history.
There was no indication of what drama would follow when Klose scored in the eighth and 15th minutes to put Germany in control of the game, and seemingly of the qualifying group.
His first goal was set up well by Marco Reus with the Lazio striker drilling a shot into the roof of the net, and Reus set up the second two with Klose needing two bites of the cherry to score.
Mertesacker added a third in the 39th minute with a shot on the turn from Thomas Muller's header.
Ozil threaded a shot into the far corner of the goal to make it four in the 55th minute and the game seemed to be over, but Sweden and Ibrahimovic had other ideas.
The Paris St Germain striker ghosted in behind Holger Badstuber to head the ball over Manuel Neuer to score in the 62nd minute.
Lustig then sent in a shot from a tight angle which found its way through Neuer's legs and inside the near post two minutes later.
Elmander brought Sweden to within a goal in the 76th minute when he placed his first-time shot into the far corner from eight yards out from Alexander Kacaniklic's pull-back.
Sweden continued to attack in the last 10 minutes and were ultimately rewarded when Elm turned to volley past Neuer deep in stoppage time to earn Sweden an unlikely, but deserved draw.