KENYA BROWN - Thursday, November 6, 2014
It's the final weekend of the Tippeligaen season, with Mikkel Diskerud and Rosenborg taking on Stromsgodset. Meanwhile, Michael Stephens, Andrew Jacobson and Stabaek face Sogndal.
Rosenborg - Stromsgodset
Second place in the standings will be determined this weekend as the Troll Kids look for a win at the Lerkendal Stadium. However, they will need some help from league champions Molde as they take on Odd on the same day.
Rosenborg has played very well in the latter half of the season, winning eight out of their last nine games. This has left them in a prime position to take over second spot as Odd's recent performances has seen them fail to capitalize on their lead.
One of the bright spots in Rosenborg's surge in the standings has been the play of their forward Pal Helland. The 24-year-old Norwegian has either scored or somehow been involved the scoring of many of the team's goals as of late.
It was his exquisite through ball that saw them score the only goal in 1-0 win over Odd last week. Head coach Kare Ingebrigtsen will most certainly have Helland in his starting lineup for this crucial game.
Another player who will most certainly be in the starting eleven for Rosenborg will be Diskerud. The final game of the league season will also see the U.S. international bring down the curtain on his career at the Trondheim-based team as his contract will run out. Diskerud has shown throughout his time with the team how much of an asset he has been with a string of excellent performances in the midfield.
While he will not walk away with the league title, a second place finish will be a good send off for the soon-to-be free agent.
Sogndal - Stabaek
The Blue Ones will look to end their season in the top 10, but they will have earn the win at the Fosshaugane Campus.
Stabaek head coach Bob Bradley has down all he can - with the limited amount of financial resources available to him - to keep the team competitive in their first season back in the Tippeligaen.
While the team was not considered favorites for the title, the accomplishment of securing their survival for another season in the top division should be more than enough to satisfy the front office.
However, the goal of finishing in the top 10 remains the priority for the Stabaek as they saw their four game unbeaten streak ended last week in a 1-0 loss to Haugesund.
Despite the loss, the team should have a good shot at returning as they face a Sogndal side that is on the brink of relegation. Having lost their last four games, the team will be fighting until the end to hopefully find their way into the relegation playoff spot which will give them another chance of securing their status in the top division for another season.
Stephens and Jacobson will once again run things in the midfield for Stabaek.
The semifinals in the first division playoffs begins this weekend and two Americans will be involved in the action. Rhett Bernstein and Mjondalen will face Fredrikstad , while Bobby Warshaw and Baerum take on Kristiansund.