MEGHAN BRENNAN - Friday, July 2, 2010
Following a month-long hiatus due to the international break, Norway's Eliteserien resumes play with Goodson, Freeman and Start traveling to Haugesund while Diskerud and Stabæk host Molde.
Haugesund - Start
Sunday Start welcomes back defenseman Clarence Goodson to the line up and returns to Eliteserien play at Haugesund Stadion on the Fourth of July.
Although Goodson has returned from his first World Cup it is unknown how long he will stay, as recent reports confirm he is in negotiations with an unspecified club. But for Sunday's game, Goodson will join fellow American Hunter Freeman on the back line at center and right back respectively.
Start will be eager to return to their high scoring ways and secure a win against the Eliteserien's 11th ranked Haugesund as their last win came on May 16th versus Kongsvinger.
Head coach Knut Torum will look to young striker, Christer Kleiven to bear much of the offensive weight as fellow top league scorer, Ole Martin Årst may not play due to injury.
Torum recently told Norwegian media, the team has used the break wisely and has improved their level of play compared to the end of the spring season.
Start heads into the half-way-point of the Eliteserien season with a 3-5-2 record and ninth in the rankings.
Stabæk - Molde
Stabæk and Norwegian-American midfielder Mikkel Diskerud host Molde Monday and hope to return to their late spring winning spree ways.
Diskerud will likely start in the midfield as he looks for his third goal and hopefully repeat last-minute Man of the Match performance againstSandfjord in the previous rounds' game.
While the late spring brought Stabæk success the first half of the Eliteserien led Jan Jonsson's team and it's fans on an emotional and physical roller coaster. Over their first six games they lost three, tied two and won only one. Over the next four they won three and tied one.
Stabæk also endured a number of injuries to key players such as Danniel Nannskog, and Pontus Farnerud. Recent club news make no indication whether the international break provided ample recuperation time for the starters.
Currently in eighth place Diskerud and company will host a 12th ranked Molde and continue their quest to the top of the Eliteserien.
With a new head coach, Reidar Vågnes, in place Hønefoss hosts Strømsgodset at AKA arena. Both Steve Clark and Kenneth Di Vita Jensen will support their teammates in their quest to escape relegation, from the sidelines.
1. Divison action won't see any American goalkeeper play as Sarpsborg's Colin Burns likely won't start against NIL-Trysil, nor will Sogndal's Joe Bednik see playing time against Moss.
Tyrel Lacey continues his lengthy knee rehab but once healthy, may not have a club to return to as FC Lyn filed for bankruptcy this week. Their game against Tromsdalen Sunday is still a question mark.