Sven-Goran Eriksson  diagnosed with terminal cancer

Sven-Gran Eriksson_02-07-12

January 11 – Former England manager Sven-Goran Eriksson has revealed he has terminal cancer and that, tragically, he might have less than a year to live.

The 75-year-old Swede says he has been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and that a year would represent “best-case scenario”.

After making his name winning league titles at club level with Lazio in Italy, Benfica in Portugal and IFK Gothenburg in his native Sweden, Eriksson led England to the World Cup finals in 2002 and 2006, losing in the quarter-finals on both occasions.

In February last year, he stepped down from his role at Swedish club Karlstad due to health issues.

He said he discovered he had cancer after collapsing suddenly a year ago.

“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,” Eriksson said in an appearance on Swedish radio.

“I know that in the best case it’s about a year, in the worst case even less. I don’t think the doctors I have can be totally sure, they can’t put a day on it.”

Eriksson said he was trying not to think about his illness, adding: “You have to trick your brain. I could go around thinking about that all the time and sit at home and be miserable and think I’m unlucky and so on.”

“It’s easy to end up in that position. But no, see the positive sides of things and don’t bury yourself in setbacks, because this is the biggest setback of them all of course. It just came from nothing. And that makes you shocked.”

“I’m not in any major pain. But I’ve been diagnosed with a disease that you can slow down but you cannot operate. So it is what it is.”

Eriksson began his career at Sweden’s Degerfors IF, before taking charge of Benfica for an immensely successful spell between 1982-84.

His last coaching role was with the Philippines’ national team in 2018-19 and most recently had the role of sporting director at Karlstad, a team in Sweden’s third division.

“I live a totally normal life,” Eriksson told the BBC World Service’s Sporting Witness programme.

“When you get a message like that, you appreciate every day and you are happy when you wake up in the morning and you feel OK, so that’s what I’m doing.

“I thought I was fully healthy but suddenly I had a small stroke so I fell and my children took me to the hospital.

“After one day of examination they told me I had five small strokes, but said ‘no problem, you will recover 100% from that’, but worse is they said I have cancer which they can’t operate on.

“They said they will give me treatment and medicine to try and live as long as possible. I have that diagnosis and they can’t operate, unfortunately.”

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