A day before England face Sweden in a match on a side of the World Cup draw that is, on the face of it, far easier than the other half, thereby giving both sides their best opportunity in years to make it to the semi-finals and possibly further still, two icons of the game, one from each country, have placed a wager on the result.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who was until recently Sweden's guiding light, and is their all-time leading international goalscorer has issued a challenge to former Captain of England David Beckham!
The duo played together at Paris Saint-Germain in 2013, Beckham later joined LA Galaxy, guiding them to back-to-back MLS Cup titles. Taking to Instagram, Zlatan, who currently plays for David Beckham's former US club LA Galaxy, posted a picture of the pair playing against each other from sometime in the 2000s.
Sweden’s all-time leading scorer publicly offered a bet to David Beckham to take him out to dinner anywhere if England win, while Beckham would have to buy him whatever Ibrahimovic wants from Swedish home goods emporium Ikea if Sweden win.
The challenge, with handles translated, reads as follows: "Yo David Beckham, if England wins I buy you dinner where ever you want in the world, but if Sweden wins you buy me what ever I want from IKEA ok?"
In response, Beckham wrote back almost immediately. The Manchester United icon took up the bet and increased the stakes, asking Ibrahimovic to wear an England jersey while eating fish and chips at Wembley at an England game.
His reply, translated from Internetspeak, reads:
"Zlatan Ibrahimovic, if Sweden win I will personally take you to IKEA and buy you what ever you need for the new mansion in LA (LA Galaxy), but when England win I want you to come and watch an England game at Wembley wearing an England shirt and enjoy & chips at half time."
Of course, the bet got football fans highly excited, but not nearly as excited as giant Swedish furniture retailer IKEA, which replied:
Yo Zlatan Ibrahimovic. When Sweden wins and you bring David Beckham, we will treat you with Kottbullar (Swedish meatballs) and Lingonberry (A Swedish berry). Hope medium size is okay?
Zlatan has accepted Beckham's side of the bet in an Instagram Story, in which he's also posted a photo of the Kottbullar and Lingonberry.
England and Sweden face each other at 7:30 pm (IST).