Iceland coach ‘not afraid of England’

Faced with a last 16 tie against England after a stoppage-time winner against Austria put his team into the Euro 2016 knockout stage, Iceland’s coach had a chilling message for Roy Hodgson, “I am not afraid”.

Iceland will meet the Three Lions in Nice on Monday after substitute Agnor Traustason’s memorable goal with the last kick of the match saw them edge Portugal for second place in Group F and send the whole country into ecstasy.

Heimir Hallgrimsson, the 49-year old who co-manages the team with former Sweden coach Lars Lagerback, told reporters after the game: “I’m not afraid of the England.

“Iceland knows everything about English football, we are English football crazy. I don’t think we need analyse them much but I don’t think they know too much about Iceland players.”

England and Iceland have only met twice before, the last meeting in 2004 ended in a 6-1 friendly win for England in Manchester.

Hallgrimson, however, said he is not concerned about the past and praised his team’s spirit.

“Everybody who was watching the game saw how much it meant to us, we were willing to sacrifice everything for the win. We were lucky on occasion but we showed a fantastic mentality,” he said.

“Iceland has to have the perfect game, we have to have our best game and we know that and we say that when we play the best team, we just have to play our best and that’s what we have to do. Even when we play our best we know we can still lose.”

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