Iceland have become the smallest country to ever qualify for a World Cup and have followed up their fantastic success in France last summer with another fantastic achievement.
With a population of around 333,000 people Iceland have become the smallest country to have ever reached a World Cup. They have continued their amazing rise from reaching the play-offs in the last World Cup were they were knocked out by Croatia, to reaching the European Championship quarter finals last summer in France, to now be at the World Cup in Russia next summer. A man who has been through it all with Iceland is Heimir Hallgrímsson, who worked as joint manager with Lars Lagerback during the 2014 World Cup qualifying round and also worked with him during their successful Euro 2016 run.
Now that Hallgrímsson is the sole manager of Iceland this is a massive success for him and Iceland as he has been involved in part-time football in Iceland for years and is helping to grow grassroots football in Iceland even more. Not only that but Heimir was also a dentist for his hometown of Vestmannaeyjar right up until he got the full-time Iceland job after the Euro 2016 competition.
Iceland have been a fairytale story in international football for the last few years and maybe other countries can learn from them while also aspiring to do what they have done. We all hope that Iceland do well at the World Cup in Russia and prove that it doesn’t matter how big you are but how well organised you are to succeed in football.