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Ljungberg fit and raring to go

Published: Tuesday 10 June 2008, 12.56CET
Sweden captain Fredrik Ljungberg is back to full fitness and impatient for his UEFA EURO 2008™ campaign to begin against Group D opponents Greece in Salzburg.
by John Mathews
from Salzburg
Ljungberg fit and raring to go
Fredrik Ljungberg has won 71 caps for Sweden ©Getty Images

Tournament statistics

GreeceSweden

Goals scored1
 
3
Total attempts34
 
33
Attempts on target14
 
12
Attempts off target13
 
18
Attempts blocked0
 
0
Attempts against woodwork1
 
1
Corners14
 
10
Offsides11
 
7
Yellow cards8
 
3
Red Cards0
 
0
Fouls committed45
 
49
Fouls suffered50
 
40
 
Published: Tuesday 10 June 2008, 12.56CET

Ljungberg fit and raring to go

Sweden captain Fredrik Ljungberg is back to full fitness and impatient for his UEFA EURO 2008™ campaign to begin against Group D opponents Greece in Salzburg.

Sweden captain Fredrik Ljungberg is back to full fitness and impatient for his side's UEFA EURO 2008™ campaign to get under way with an opening game against Greece in Salzburg on Tuesday.

Rib injury
Ljungberg said he has now fully recovered from the cracked rib he picked up while playing for English club West Ham United FC towards the end of the domestic season. The injury had threatened to rule him out of the finals, but the attacking midfielder said he was now feeling fine. "I will be playing with a protective device for the whole tournament. I feel OK right now, but if I am feeling any pain I will be using painkillers." Looking tanned and relaxed, the shaven-headed Swede expects to meet difficult opponents in the shape of the UEFA EURO 2004™ winners, explaining:. "Greece are the reigning champions and of course we have a lot of respect for them. They surprised a lot of teams last time and they could do the same again, so we have to be careful."

Home backing
According to a recent poll back in his home country, 75 per cent of the Swedish public expect their national team to reach the quarter-finals here, just as they did in Portugal four years ago, where they lost on penalties to the Netherlands. "The group is a tough one, we have to recognise this," said Ljungberg. "It's great that there is interest and that people want us to go on because they believe in us. I think that's very positive indeed." He is especially keen to get inside the ground and find out just how large the Swedish contingent will be at the Stadion Salzburg Wals-Siezenheim. "Of course the fans make the difference, particularly so in Germany when we beat Paraguay in Berlin during the [2006 FIFA] World Cup," he said. As for his own enthusiam, the 31-year-old insisted it remained strong despite his having now reached veteran status. "Of course I feel the first championship I attended [UEFA EURO 2000™] was the one I looked forward to most because everything was completely new, but every championship is a highlight in my life."

Last updated: 10/06/08 21.34CET

http://www.uefa.com/uefaeuro/news/newsid=706908.html#ljungberg+raring

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