Screaming fans, lively teams and thick British accents: the English football league is alive and well in Stockholm. Simon Brazier, a massive football fan, long-term player and Brit living in Sweden has provided us with the ins-and-outs of Stockholm’s expat football culture.
If you are interested in playing for one of Stockholm’s three international teams, check back next week for ‘an expat’s guide to Stockholm’s football clubs’.
Simon you’ve been a life long football fan. Football wise, what is great about living in Stockholm?
We live in a great city that has so much to offer fans and players. There are three international football clubs (FC), loads of great sports bars, and if you’re a football nut from the UK, Stockholm shows more British televised football matches, than you could watch in England. tvmatchen.se lists time and info on all matches shown on Swedish TV.
Do you think playing in the FC’s is a good way to meet people in Stockholm?
Absolutely. All the teams I have been on have been great. When I first arrived in Stockholm I played for a Swedish team: a really good bunch of lads and it was cool to have a pint after games. I would recommend this to people who are really looking to work on their Swedish and enjoy the local culture.
For me personally, I prefer playing for a English speaking team. I found Swedish teams more reserved, and to be honest I missed the English banter and rougher playing style. Now I play for the Albion (FC) a English speaking team sponsored by O’Connells English pub in Gamla Stan (http://www.oconnells.se). It’s a good laugh. The team has a good attitude and we have a fantastic community of expats: the majority are British but we have players from all over.
We get along great. We practice on the field and a group of us either hit the gym or go swimming a few extra times a week. We meet for pints. We watch British matches on the weekend. We banter. We muck about. They are a fantastic group of guys, and it is a great way to build a community in Sweden.
Simon what do you recommend to other football loving expats?
Go out, have a drink at one of Stockholm’s English or Irish pubs, watch some matches and if you are interested in playing for one of Stockholm’s international teams check out www.everysport.com for team info and stats.