The small Nordic nation picked up from where they left off after an impressive Euro 2016, where they beat footballing heavyweights England. After being drawn in a tough qualifying group consisting of Croatia, Ukraine Turkey Finland, and Kosovo, they finished top of the group and ensured direct qualification to their first ever World Cup. Their coach, a part-time dentist, Heimir Hallgrimsson fashioned a well-drilled side in qualification and they proved extremely hard to beat, winning 7, drawing just one and losing two of their matches. They were a force to be reckoned with at home, winning all five of their home games and pulled off stellar performances on the road too, beating Turkey 3 goals to Nil. This being the biggest achievement of the Tiny nation, they seem well prepared to beat the odds like they have proven to do in the past, come Russia 2018.
Iceland are looking to build on their Euro 2016 success.
Here’s how they are preparing for their World Cup debut.
— BBC Sport (@BBCSport) June 4, 2018
One to watch out for: Gylfi Sigurdsson-
Sigurdsson has been their main Talisman for the past few years. The Everton man has topped the scoring charts for the Icelanders and also pulled the strings from midfield. Being the player they always look to for some inspiration, the coach will hope that his charismatic number 10 will be fit and firing from all cylinders.
FIFA world ranking: 22
Coach: Heimir Hallgrimsson
Captain: Aron Gunnarsson
Nickname: Strakarnir Okkar (Our Boys)
World Cup history: Qualified once (2018)
Best World Cup result: N/A
TAB odds: 201-1
Being placed in a pool with Argentina, Nigeria and Croatia it seems highly unlikely that the will progress further in the competition. They will need to pull off an extraordinary effort, needing to get a positive result in their match against Nigeria and Croatia and do their best to get something out of the Argentina game to move further in the competition. At this point in time it looks highly unlikely that they will progress, but they have a knack of pulling of surprises in big tournaments and would hope to do so in the biggest of them all.