Former England manager Sven-Goran Eriksson has revealed that he has in a “best case” scenario around a year to live after being diagnosed with terminal cancer.
The 75-year-old Swede was told by doctors that there is no cure to his pancreatic cancer – only treatments to slow down its progression and manage his symptoms. His diagnosis comes 11 months after he stood down as sporting director at Swedish club Karlstad due to health issues.
Eriksson, who was in charge of England for five years before leaving after the 2006 World Cup, told Swedish Radio P1: “Everyone can see that I have a disease that’s not good, and everyone supposes that it’s cancer, and it is. But I have to fight it as long as possible. It’s pancreatic – you can’t operate on it. It can be slowed.
“I know that in the best case it’s about a year, in the worst case even less. Or in the best case I suppose even longer. I don’t think the doctors I have can be totally sure, they can’t put a day on it.”
After starting his coaching career in his homeland with Degerfors and IFK Gothenburg, Eriksson took over at Benfica in 1982 and led them to three Portuguese top-flight titles and a runners-up finish in the UEFA Cup before guiding Lazio to their second and most recent Serie A triumph in 1999-2000. He then became the first foreign-born England manager when he succeeded Kevin Keegan in January 2001, but he was unable to guide the team beyond the quarter-finals at the 2002 and 2006 World Cups or Euro 2004.
Here, Yahoo News UK looks at the Eriksson’s career after managing England’s so-called golden generation.
Manchester City, 2007-2008
Eriksson became Manchester City’s manager in July 2007 – one year after he left his role at England. He signed a three-year contract worth a total of £6 million before bonuses. He made history by becoming the club’s first non-UK manager and the first Swedish manager in the Premier League.
Eriksson made a winning start to his new job, putting them top after three games and he was awarded Premier League's Manager of the Month award for August. However, after several months of being in the top six, City fell to seventh and begun suffering a series of heavy defeats – most notably losing 8-1 to Middlesbrough in their last game of the season and placing City ninth after Eriksson’s first year in charge.
However, despite City going on to qualifying for the UEFA Cup and achieving the club’s joint highest Premiere League point total (55), owner Thaksin Shinawatra replaced Eriksson due to an "avalanche of very poor results which is unacceptable at this level" – two years earlier than had been planned.
Eriksson marked his return to international football by signing on to become the manager of the Mexico national team in 2008. HIs first game in charge saw the team win 2-1 against Honduras.
But calls on him to be replaced arrived quickly after Mexico lost 2-0 to the US the following year, with reports suggesting Portsmouth were interested in making him their manager. Eriksson denied the rumours and insisted he would help Mexico qualify for the World Cup. But a 3-1 loss to Honduras saw him sacked as manager.
Ivory Coast, 2010
A year after the Mexico sacking, Eriksson was back as manager, this time for the Ivory Coast national team. It was reported that he received £270,000 for accepting the job.
However, it was not the best of starts for Eriksson as Ivory Coast drew 0-0 against Portugal in their opening game of the 2010 World Cup, before losing 3-1 to Brazil. A win against North Korea was not enough to see Ivory Coast through to the next round and his contract was not extended beyond its end date of June that year.
Leicester City, 2010-2011
It was a return to English club football in 2010 for Eriksson when he was appointed manager of Leicester City – at a time they were sitting in the relegation zone of the Championship. In December – two months after he was appointed manager at Leicester City – Eriksson turned down the chance to take over from Sam Allardyce as Blackburn Rovers manager.
Eriksson revived Leicester’s fortunes and the club rose to seventh place by February 2011. But the fairytale quickly soured as the club’s form went through a shaky period and they ultimately ended up 10th.
Despite spending millions on transfers, Eriksson left the club by mutual consent in October, after just 13 league matches. The club were in 13th position at the time he left.
Guangzhou R&F, 2013-2014
Eriksson signed a 19-month contract to be the head coach of Guangzhou R&F of the Chinese Super League in June 2013, with a salary of around £2 million a year. The club finished third in the league the following year, meaning they qualified for the AFC Champions League for the first time in the club’s history.
Despite the success, negotiations for an extension to his contract broke down in November 2014 and he left the club.
Shanghai SIPG, 2014-2016
Staying in China, Eriksson signed a two-year contract with Chinese Super League side Shanghai SIPG so open after he left Guangzhou R&F. It was a successful season for the club, and they finished runners-up in 2015, qualifying for the AFC Champions League for the first time.
Success continued and Shanghai SIPG made it to the quarter finals in their debut in the tournament and once against secured their place for a second time by finishing third at the end of the season. However, criticisms over his style of play and not giving younger players a chance ultimately meant Eriksson would be replaced in 2016.
Not long after leaving Shanghai SIPG in 2016, Eriksson signed up to another Chinese club – this time it was China League One side Shenzhen. He won his first six matches of the 2017 season and for a while it looked like Eriksson would lead the club onto greater things.
But it was not to be and the club went nine games without a win. The results meant that Eriksson was sacked in June 2017.
In 2019 Eriksson marked his return to international football by signing on as head coach for the Philippines national side. Initially taking the job on a six-month contract, Eriksson guided the team to second place in their group in the 2018 AFF Championship. They eventually lost out on a final place following defeat at the feet of Vietnam.
It was a different story in the 2019 AFC Asian Cup, with the Philippines only managing to score one goal during their debut in the tournament. Eriksson ended his time as head coach in 2019 – marking the end of his managerial career in professional football.