Iceland set a bizarre record in draw with Portugal 5 years ago

Iceland set a bizarre record in draw with Portugal

Iceland weren't given much of a chance in this year's European Championships.

The Scandinavians are the smallest country involved in Euro 2016, or indeed in any edition of the continental competition, with a population of just over 330,000.


But that's comparable to the population of Leicester, where another minor footballing miracle occurred barely a month ago.

And the Icelanders got off to a fantastic start, holding Portugal to a 1-1 draw and keeping a misfiring Cristiano Ronaldo off the scoresheet.

But 'smallest population of a Euros participant' wasn't the only record broken by Iceland, as those stats geniuses at Opta noticed.


That starting XI, in full, was as follows:

  • Hannes Halldórsson
  • Birkir Sævarsson
  • Ragnar Sigurdsson
  • Kári Árnason
  • Ari Skúlason
  • Johann Gudmundsson
  • Aron Gunnarsson
  • Gylfi Sigurdsson
  • Birkir Bjarnason
  • Kolbeinn Sigþórsson
  • Jón Dadi Böðvarsson

And if that wasn't enough, joint-coaches Lars Lagerbäck (don't panic about the name - he's Swedish) & Heimir Hallgrímsson brought Alfred Finnbogason and Elmar Bjarnason off the bench.

Incredibly, 22 of the 23 squad members have surnames ending in -son. The only outlier? Eidur Gudjohnsen.

That record, along with the highly-impressive draw in Saint-Etienne, ensured this very dodgy sight-gag wasn't the only thing we were talking about after the game.