Former Sweden captain Zlatan Ibrahimovic said retiring from the national team has allowed the country to play without pressure as his departure lowered expectations.
Manchester United striker Ibrahimovic ended his international career following Euro 2016 after 116 caps and a record 62 goals.
“Sweden are playing without pressure, because since I left, nobody expects much of them now, from the media to the fans. When I play, the level is raised, so it is lowered in my absence,” Ibrahimovic told Sky Sport Italia.
“Having said that, this squad remains a good collective, just with less responsibility on their shoulders. The players are not very experienced, but the project is ambitious.”