Jan
28
2008
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Nils Liedholm

On 5 November, the legendary Swedish footballer Nils Liedholm died in his adopted home of Italy at the age of 85. Liedholm, an Olympic gold medallist in 1948 and a World Cup finalist in 1958, spent almost 40 years of an eventful and very successful career in Italy and went on to run a vineyard in the province of Asti. As captain of the Swedish national team, the elegant and technically gifted striker gave his side a fourth-minute lead in the 1958 World Cup final against Brazil on home soil, but eventually had to accept a 5-2 defeat. Liedholm made only 21 appearances for his country because long-term employers AC Milan were very reluctant to release him. He collected two championship medals in Sweden and four in Italy. In the 1950s, Liedholm teamed up with Gunnar Gren and Gunnar Nordahl to form the legendary Sweden and AC Milan attacking trio known as “Gre-No-Li”. From 1963 to 1989 he coached several Italian clubs, winning the Scudetto with both AC Milan (1979) and Roma (1983).