Bank: Djurgården has a gold to believe in

Old nice Örebro? It’s dark here now, the curtain is coming down

ÖREBRO. A steady, nasty team from the big city went to Örebro, took their points and continues to believe in the Swedish Championship gold.

Behind them they left ÖSK, with a simple ticket down.

Soon it will be there, in black and white.

Old nice Örebro.

Ten years ago, I went here to portray a club that rose, from the Superettan, a financial crash and the ashes. I drank coffee with the governor Rose-Marie Frebran, talked about the journey taken Örebro SK from crisis to the role of pattern club. They had come back, established themselves as challengers to the big ones, they were ready to take the next step now. To become an IFK Norrköping, an Elfsborg, a club that could actually win. The goal was nailed: Swedish Championship gold in 2015. IFK Norrköping became champions that year.

And now this.

In the national media and headlines, this autumn evening was mostly about Djurgården’s hunt for Malmö FF and a Swedish Championship gold, I myself took an extra lap around Behrn Arena to feel a little bad. There is not much that is sadder than going to an arena where a nice, classic football club is just waiting for the car to fall.

It strikes me that ÖSK reversed the previous crisis, among other things by making a study visit to the association, which was Sweden-leading, at the same time as they themselves were sent down a division of the union and its mismanaged finances: it was Djurgården they were trying to learn from.

Now Dif came here to kick down old nice Örebro another half a meter in the dark.

Filled half the arena in blue stripes

In the last second of the first half, Emmanuel Banda pounded in 1-0, a volley on a second ball, and it is difficult to imagine a more ÖSK moment. They had made an okay first half, locked in kicks with three players, trusted that Jake Larsson could one-on-one challenge himself to dangers from his left wing, and actually played his way to the half’s most open chance when Kevin Walker released Rickard Friday behind Dif’s backline.

Friday fell itself.

Djurgården had filled half the arena with blue stripes, and had a soundscape as if they were playing in Stockholm. Hampus Finndell started their turnaround game, but they played past ÖSK’s first press too rarely and instead lacked roads everyone knows. It was Magnus Eriksson’s direct play against the speed (Asoro, Chilufya) behind the back line, the play against an oncoming Haris Radetinac who got Elliot Käck on the overlap, and then Hjalmar Ekdal’s header on corners and free kicks.

They pushed for the opportunities they were given. Eriksson stole the ball and dotted the crossbar from 22 meters, Ekdal followed up and sent a second ball over, and in the end Radetinac came up with a post that Banda fed into the goal.

It was logical because Djurgården is a stable, heavy football team that can methodically play its way to such goals.

It was above all logical because this is something that Örebro SK has devoted the whole of 2021 to.

They can point to injuries, they can even say that they actually played good football in sequences of many matches – but they are much better at conceding goals than scoring them. ÖSK has a squad that is built to play football (Besara! Hamad!), But which is kinder than Winnie the Pooh, lighter than Nasse. In addition, Vítor Gazimba hated a couple of months of shoveling away every trace of security in the squad.

This winter, they are here with a super one season to deal with, with the consequences of a pandemic and a dozen expiring contracts.

Meanwhile, Djurgården is chasing gold.

ÖSK has nothing to believe in

They chased better after the break, possibly played worse, but had screwed up the frenzy in their press game (Curtis Edwards came in instead of the goal scorer Banda, and chased everything). ÖSK was kept further from games and chances, Chilufya and Asoro found decent finishes, but above all it was as if Djurgården became a little tougher, a little meaner, with aggressive pressure both when they went high and when they were lower. Marcus Lantz replaced Agon Mehmeti and poked out Friday on the right wing, but the match picture did not speak directly for him – Örebro had to step higher, against a tough Djurgården who had Asoro, Chilufya and eventually Nicklas Bärkroth to change.

It was a trap waiting to strike.

They tried, they lifted up, midfielder Niclas Bergmark – born with black and white blood in his veins – nodded just outside, and was finally lifted up as a striker. ÖSK ended the match with the second midfielder Nasiru Moro next to him at the front. They tried, they were not enough. When the week ended, half of Behrn Arena was filled with Dif supporters who sang about the super-Djurgår’n. Elfsborg did away with themselves, AIK lost in the last race, they have hung on to the gold train and can put rock hard pressure on Malmö FF before MFF’s away match against Blåvitt.

Magnus Eriksson started a grandstand song about Gnaget, Djurgården has a gold to believe in.

Old nice Örebro? It’s dark here now, the curtain is coming down.

ÖSK has nothing to believe in at all anymore.


Sportbladet – Allsvenskan

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Bank: Djurgården has a gold to believe in