Which nation’s international football record does England’s most resemble – Sweden or Germany?
(Answer under the cut, so if you don’t want to know the score and are reading this in some manner that doesn’t allow for the cut, look away now)
The correct answer is, of course, Sweden – pretty regular qualifiers for the World Cup, but only ever getting to the final when they hosted it and a couple of appearances (one more than England) in the last four, most recently in the 90s. Also, a rather poor record in European Championships, but they did get to the semi-finals as hosts.
This does, of course, lead to the next question, which is why do we compare ourselves with, and have expectations that we will match, the Germans rather than the Swedes?