Sex, lies and fake sheikhs: Eriksson to write memoirs

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The Independent Online

Sven Goran Eriksson is planning a multimillion-pound book deal to tell the story of his turbulent time as England manager.

The memoirs are currently being touted around publishers and are expected to fetch £1.5m. Yesterday, Eriksson's business manager confirmed the project, saying that once his contract with the Football Association ended after the World Cup, he was free to publish.

The account of his five years in charge is expected to include revelations about his affairs with Faria Alam, a secretary at the FA, and Ulrika Jonsson, along with his arguments with Sir Alex Ferguson, the Manchester United manager, over Wayne Rooney's injury. He will also recall the "fake sheikh" newspaper exposé which led to his decision to leave the job, and the dressing-room secrets of the past two World Cup campaigns.

Eriksson's tenure as England coach ends officially on 10 July - the day after the World Cup final - and his advisers have told him that there is no more lucrative time to publish.

The 58-year-old Swede, who has earned about £25m from his five years as England boss, is likely to make another £1.5m from the book deal, plus any income generated from serialisation rights.

His memoirs are unlikely to be welcomed by the FA and his players, as they are bound to prompt recollections of the controversy surrounding the "World Cup diary" of the former England boss Glenn Hoddle after France '98. While such a book has always been likely, some may consider that in announcing his intentions two days before the first World Cup quarter-final, Eriksson has acted with indecent haste.

Eriksson's long-time friend and adviser Lars Sternmarker said: "He has fantastic stories to tell. He wants to tell the truth about his football life, from the start in Torsby to England. It's something he wants to give back to the football lovers. It will be his legacy."

The Swedish-based business manager added: "First we're going to find a publisher, then a good writer. Sven isn't happy with the books about him. This will be his own words. There have been so many books. They haven't been successful, but Sven says that not even half of the stuff in the books has been true.

"Sven's contract with the FA stops him from writing it now. But he can start when the contract ends, although when he gets another football job, then he will, of course, make that his priority. With regard to his next job, Athole Still [Eriksson's management company] and I are putting together all the pieces right now. We have identified the clubs and national teams that Sven regards as interesting.

"Sven doesn't want to think about the future until the World Cup is over. He is totally focused on England. But it's a very exciting time. It's very stimulating and fun. He's very popular."

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