Portugal vs Sweden: Preview and Prediction

Portugal will host Sweden at Estadio Dom Afonso Henriques in an international friendly on Thursday, looking to boost their morale with a comprehensive victory.

The last time Portugal and Sweden met was in October 2020, with the Seleccao picking up a 3-0 win at home in the UEFA Nations League.

Sweden will be hoping to pull off a positive result here, and it remains to be seen whether they can upset the odds during Jon Dahl Tomasson’s first match in charge as the manager of Sweden.

Portugal were outstanding in the UEFA Euro 2024 Qualifiers, winning all ten matches, and they will be looking to continue that form with an impressive performance here. Meanwhile, Sweden missed out on the European Championships after finishing third in their qualifier group.

They will be desperate to start a new era under Jon Dahl Tomasson with an impressive result and a positive performance here. The Hard Tackle takes a closer look at the encounter ahead of the latest meeting between the two sides.

Team news and tactics


Cristiano Ronaldo is currently on holiday, and he will miss out on Thursday’s game. Joao Cancelo, Diogo Dalot, Danilo Pereira, Ruben Neves, Vitinha, Otavio, and Joao Felix have been rested as well.

Portugal are likely to shape up in a 4-3-3 formation, with Diogo Costa in goal. Nelson Semedo and Raphael Guerreiro will start as the full-backs, and they will look to contribute at both ends of the pitch. Ruben Dias will start alongside Pepe at the heart of the defence.

As for the midfield unit, Joao Palhinha will start as the defensive midfielder, and he will look to break up opposition attacks and win the ball back for his side. Bruno Fernandes and Joao Neves will add creativity and control to the side alongside him.

Bernardo Silva and Rafael Leao will be deployed in the wide areas. The two players will look to add creativity and goals to the side. Finally, Goncalo Ramos will lead the line for Portugal against Sweden on Thursday.

Probable Lineup (4-3-3): Costa; Semedo, Dias, Pepe, Guerreiro; Fernandes, Palhinha, J. Neves; Bernardo, Ramos, Leao


Jesper Karlstrom misses out due to illness. Other than that, Sweden have a fully-fit squad to choose from. The visitors are likely to shape up in a 4-3-3 formation as well, with Robin Olsen in goal.

Emil Holm and Gabriel Gudmundsson will be deployed as the full-backs, and they will look to keep things compact defensively and help out during counter-attacking opportunities. Isak Hien will start alongside Victor Lindelof at the heart of the defence.

As for the midfield unit, Jens Cajuste will start alongside Sebastian Larsson and Emil Forsberg. They will look to protect the defensive unit and break up opposition attacks. Dejan Kulusevski and Alexander Isak will add pace, flair and creativity to the side from the flanks.

They will look to help out during counter-attacking opportunities and trouble the Portuguese defence on the break. Viktor Gyokeres is in impressive form right now, and he will lead the line for Sweden.

Probable Lineup (4-3-3): Olsen; Holm, Hien, Lindelof, Gudmundsson; Cajuste, Larsson, Forsberg; Kulusevski, Gyokeres, Isak

Key Stats

  • Portugal conceded in just one of their ten games in 2023.
  • Sweden have only won one of their previous five meetings against Portugal.
  • Portugal have won their last ten matches.
  • Sweden have picked up three wins from their last five matches.

Player to Watch

Viktor Gyokeres

Embed from Getty Images

The 25-year-old Swedish striker is in the form of his life, and he is undoubtedly the best striker in European football right now. Gyokeres has 36 goals and 14 assists across all competitions at the club level, and he will look to translate that form for his country as well.

This is a golden opportunity for him to make his mark against a top team at the international level, and he could cause all sorts of problems for the Portuguese defence with his goalscoring ability and creativity in the final third.


Portugal 2-1 Sweden

This is likely to be a cracking contest between two good teams. Portugal are undoubtedly the better team here, and they will be expected to grind out of victory eventually, but Sweden are likely to make life difficult for them.

The visitors have an exceptional front three capable of troubling any defence in world football. Both teams are likely to get on the scoresheet, but the hosts should end up victorious eventually. The Hard Tackle predicts a 2-1 victory for Roberto Martinez and his men.

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