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Did you Know?
Karl Fredrik “Freddie” Ljungberg is a Swedish former footballer who played as a winger. He currently works as the assistant manager of VfL Wolfsburg. He began his career at Halmstad and went on to spend most of his career at Arsenal, where he won honours including two Premier League titles and three FA Cups, scoring in two finals including the victory in 2002. After leaving Arsenal in 2007, he had short spells at a number of clubs in England, Scotland, the United States, Japan and India. An international for a full decade, Ljungberg earned 75 caps and was captain of the Swedish national team until he announced his international retirement after UEFA Euro 2008. Ljungberg was a model for Calvin Klein underwear until 2007. He previously represented brands such as Nike, Procter & Gamble, L’Oreal, Puma, Beats, ESPN and Pepsi.
Things to Know:
After the World Cup 2006 finals, Ljungberg became captain of Sweden National Team. He captained the side in 8 of the 9 Euro 2008 qualifiers including games against Latvia, Liechtenstein, Spain, Northern Ireland, and Iceland. In the qualifiers, Ljungberg scored one goal against Liechtenstein on 17 October 2007 and had an assist in the Latvia match four days later. Sweden qualified for the European Championship with 6 wins. Prior the Euro 2008, Ljungberg fractured his ribs making his appearance in the tournament uncertain. However, Ljungberg was able to participate in the Euro and played the games with a special brace to protect his healing ribs. Ljungberg was able to start in Sweden’s first match against Greece which ended in a 2–0 victory. Sweden’s next match was against one of the favorites, Spain. Sweden were able to contain Spain who struggled from making big advances. However, Sweden lost that match 1–2. At the end of the game, Ljungberg was furious with Dutch referee Pieter Vink and proclaimed, “There was a foul just before the Spanish second goal and it wasn’t given. It was lucky I was asked to do a TV interview straight after we came off otherwise I would have kicked a door in!” Sweden was unable to compete with the young Russian squad and were defeated 0–2. Despite Sweden’s early dismissal from the tournament, Ljungberg was considered by newspapers in Sweden, France, Italy, Germany and the host nation Austria as being Sweden’s leading player throughout the tournament. On 27 June 2008 Ljungberg announced that he was ending his 10-year career for the national team. The decision came following Sweden’s early exit from Euro 2008. Ljungberg played in 75 internationals for Sweden, scoring 14 goals.