Mikael Lustig has hit out at the Italian fans that booed the Swedish national anthem before Monday’s play-off clash in Milan.
The Celtic defender was caught by television cameras shouting ‘F****** C****’ in anger when the band stopped playing.
Lustig missed the first leg 1-0 victory through suspension but played a full part as the Swedes kept a clean sheet to book their place in Russia.
The Swedes weren’t lacking in motivation before the game but if they needed anything extra to prepare them from the off they found it as the two teams lined up for the anthems.
“When it’s the national anthem of a country, you must show respect and they did not,” Lustig told The Sun. “It was then I thought that Italy weren’t as good as we thought.”
Both sides had strong penalty claims during the match with the referee having a strange interpretation of hand ball.
Italy enjoyed 70% possession in the first half but found the breakthrough elusive with Lustig and his defensive colleagues giving next to nothing away.
“When the board went up for five minutes of injury-time, it was a surreal moment,” he added.
“There are so many feelings going through your head and you do not know where to go or what to do.
“It was a brilliant feeling when the ref blew for time but there’s no time for me to celebrate because we are away at Ross County on Saturday, so I need to recover.”
Lustig could be joined in Russia by Celtic team-mate Tom Rogic with Australia hosting Honduras today after drawing the first leg 0-0.