DAVID SMITH - Friday, August 12, 2016
The second round matchups of the Danish Cup were set on Friday, giving AJ Soares and Aarhus an easy beginning as they try to win a record tenth title.
Aarhus were only a goal away from lifting the cup for the tenth time barely three months ago, but were forced to settle for second-place after eventual champions Copenhagen netted a late winner for their seventh title.
AJ Soares and co. will see their quest for redemption get underway against fifth-tier Aalborg Freja in late-August's second round, and should have no issue to reach the next step against the northern minnows.
The second round sees all but the top-four finishers in last-season's Superliga enter the competition, meaning that all non-eliminated Americans playing in Denmark now know their matchups.
Babajide Ogunbiyi and Hobro fought through a tough first-round win over lower-division Ringkøbing, and were rewarded with a relatively tough matchup against First Division rivals Vendsyssel FF. This will will be a bit of homecoming for the American defender, who spent half a season with Vendsyssel after an ill-fated attempt to move to MLS.
Viborg FF midfielder George Fochive has had trouble getting onto the field since starting the team's league opener in mid-July, but could be in luck for a starting spot when the team visits fifth-division OKS.
Vejle BK has yet to play their first-round game against lower division Tjæreborg IF, but if they come through the tie as expected, they have an enticing, albeit daunting, matchup with top-flight Odense BK awaiting. American keeper Mike Lansing has yet to make the field for his new team, but could very well be the team's go-to man in cup competitions.
Elsewhere in the round, Conor O'Brien and AC Horsens should be able to make quick work of their fourth-division foes IF Lyseng, Anton Peterlin and B93 have a huge opportunity to advance against KFUM Roskilde, and Næstved's pair of American attackers - Sammy Adjei and Ryan Finley - will face either lower-division Herlufsholm GF or First Division rivals Nykøbing.
The round will be played on Tuesday and Wednesday, August 30/31, with the winners moving onto late-October's third round.
Danish Cup second round draw
Aalborg Freja - AGF Aarhus
OKS - Viborg FF
IF Lyseng - AC Horsens
Tjæreborg IF/Vejle BK - Odense BK
Vendsyssel FF - Hobro IK
KFUM Roskilde - B93
Herlufsholm GF/Nykøbing FC - Næstved