Sweden nearly caused a huge upset in the World Cup last night. After being 1-0 up against reigning champions Germany they looked set to be earning a draw after Marco Reus equalised. But Toni Kroos’ excellently converted free-kick saved the Germans.
However, the main talking point from the game among Sunderland fans on Twitter was the scorer of Sweden’s goal. Ola Toivonen was the man who got the ball rolling for the Swedes.
He latched onto a pass from Viktor Claesson, controlling expertly with his chest, before lifting a sumptuous lob over Manuel Neuer.
It was a goal of extraordinary talent and ability from the attacking midfielder. Both of those traits were rarely on show during Toivonen’s time at the Stadium of Light.
Signed by his former PSV Eindhoven manager Dick Advocaat on loan from Rennes in 2015 he struggled for any form on Wearside. Often playing in a deeper role than the one he occupied v Germany, Sunderland rarely saw any quality from the Swede.
In 14 games for Sunderland, Toivonen managed the one goal. His performances were forgettable and fans were left extremely disappointed by his displays in red-and-white.
As reported by the Shields Gazette at the time his performances were so bad Sunderland wanted to cancel his loan, but parent club Rennes refused to have him back.
He was barely seen after Advocaat got the sack and Sam Allardyce arrived. But many Sunderland fans would place him among the worst to play for the club in recent memory. Considering their back-to-back relegation status, that is no mean feat.
But it seems, when playing for Sweden and in his best position, you get an entirely different version of the Sunderland flop…
Got to be a different Toivonen… #SAFC
— Blandy Son (@blandy_son) June 23, 2018
— . (@lrmarrin) June 23, 2018
Stop the World Cup now, Ola Toivonen one of the worst players I’ve seen at Sunlun scoring against the World Champions Germany. #SAFC
— Alex Marshall (@Ali_Marshall10) June 23, 2018
Just slating Toivonen and he scores. That’s spooky #WordCup2018
— SAFC Dolphins (@sportmad72) June 23, 2018
— Henri Katila (@KatilaHenri) June 23, 2018
Well Toivonen looks better not in central midfielder like he was for us a few years ago. #safc
— Jordan Ramsey (@RamseySAFC) June 23, 2018
SAFC flop Ola Toivonen could just have dumped Germany out of the World Cup! ???? #Russia2018
— SAFC Fans (@SafcFans) June 23, 2018
Remember Ola Toivonen’s performance against Newcastle in 2015? Up there with the worst individual performance I’ve ever seen from an #SAFC player. Came off injured in the 35th minute and must have gave the ball away about 10 times in that period! ?? #GERSWE #GER #SWE #WorldCup
— Joe Hodge (@HodgeSAFC) June 23, 2018
— Peter Olson (@Petski84) June 23, 2018
Sounds familiar. There must be more than one Ola Toivonen ? https://t.co/RhT5kOOwGZ
— Bilbo Ball Baggins (@1879_SAFC) June 23, 2018
Which Toivonen did we sign? It clearly wasn’t this one #safc
— David Place (@samsonplace) June 23, 2018
— Michael Potts (@MJPotts17) June 23, 2018