KENYA BROWN - Friday, August 8, 2014
Michael Stephens and Andrew Jacobsen will look to help Stabaek stay in the win column as they take on Molde, while Mikkel Diskerud and Rosenborg look to take out their frustrations against Start.
Molde - Stabaek
Stabaek head to the Aker Stadium in Molde on Sunday looking for another three points to pull themselves further away from the relegation zone.
American keeper Ethan Horvath will likely be on the bench for Molde, while Josh Gatt is still recovering from a long-term injury.
Head coach Bob Bradley and the Blue Ones will be entering the game on a high after a resounding 4-1 defeat of Rosenborg last week - their biggest win of the season.
Stabaek will be counting on forward Fredrik Brustad to maintain his form up top as he has scored a total of four goals in his past two games.
Midfielders Michael Stephens and Andrew Jacobsen are expected to be in the starting lineup once again for the team, but it will take a monumental effort for them to overcome the might of the league leaders.
Molde, on the other hand, will be looking to maintain their unbeaten streak which now stands at 16 games. The team was on a four game winning streak before settling for a 1-1 tie with Start on Monday.
Stabaek's backline may have a field day with the likes of forwards Mohamed Elyounoussi and Daniel Chima - the team's top two goal scorers.
Rosenborg - IK Start
Struggling Rosenborg and Mikkel Diskerud will welcome Start to the Lerkendal Stadium on Sunday in Trondheim as they look to end their two game losing streak.
Now out of contention for the league title, the Troll Kids will be looking to keep the pressure on the teams above for one of the two Europa League spots for next season.
Head coach Kare Ingebrigtsen's fifth place team is in a slump as they have allowed seven total goals in their last two games against Molde and Stabaek.
A visit by ninth place Start should come as a welcome relief. Midfielder Diskerud, who started in those two games, could find himself playing a role in this one as well, but it is uncertain whether he will be in the starting eleven.
Start come into the game having gone unbeaten in four of their last five games.
After suffering a 5-1 hammering to Haugesund, the team bounced back with an encouraging 1-1 draw to Molde. However, Start still remain in a fight to avoid the relegation, so they will be looking to come away from their game with Rosenborg with at least a point.
Odd - Stromsgodset
It will be a battle between second and third place teams as Stromsgodset head to the Skagerak Arena to take on Odd on Sunday. Both will be looking to take all three points as they want to keep the pressure on first place Molde.
Stromsgodset have gone unbeaten in four of their last five games, which kept them on pace with the league leaders. However, a loss to Valerenga on July 14 has made their title challenge a little more difficult.
Anything but a win for Godset and they can count themselves out of the title picture. Midfielder Jeb Brovsky should come off the bench for the team once again as he has done in their past two games.
Odd will be a difficult opponent to knock off on Sunday as they come into the game on a ten game unbeaten run. They come into this encounter after identical 3-1 victories over Sogndal and last place Sandnal Ulf.
The game is too close to call as in the past seven meetings each team has walked away with wins, with only one tie coming on May 10, 2013.
Bodo/Glimt defender Zarek Valentin will most likely play no part in the struggling side's game against Sogndal on Monday.