DAVID SMITH - Saturday, July 16, 2011
Mikkel Diskerud and Stabaek will need to be at their best if they hope for any result against visiting Rosenborg while Jonathan Borrajo and Ham-Kam will try to extend their long unbeaten run as Sandnes Ulf pay a visit.
Stabaek IF - Rosenborg Trondheim
Mikkel Diskerud will be in Stabaek's starting lineup on Sunday when they try to put a stop to their five-game winless run against visiting Rosenborg.
Stabaek have seen their season slowly take a troubling turn in the last month. Whereas they were previously looking headed for a fight to reach Europe, a five-game streak during which they have only taken a grand total of two points has now left them closer to the drop zone.
The results have come in a variety of forms, both narrow shut-out losses go to along with a high-scoring draw, however the common theme is the complete lack of ability of the team to actually finish out a game to take full points.
Their task will not be made any easier by a Rosenborg team which is perhaps the hottest in Norway. The team has gone ten games without a loss across all competitions, most recently blowing by Icelandic team Breidablik Kopavogur by a 5-0 score in Champions League qualifying.
Neither team is currently reporting any absences from their squads.
Ham-Kam - Sandnes Ulf
Jonathan Borrajo and Ham-Kam face a tough test on Sunday if they hope to run their unbeaten streak to nine games, as they host fourth-place Sandnes Ulf, winners of six straight in Adeccoligaen play.
After running off an impressive seven straight victories, Ham-Kam had a slight letdown in their last game before Norway's one-week break, only managing a draw, albeit a dramatic one, on their journey to Kongsvinger.
They will need to tighten up the defense against visiting Ulf, who have been even more impressive lately, winning six on the bounce. During this span of time they have outscored opponents by an imperious 14-3 margin, and are threatening to break into the top spots of the league.
Heading into the game, only one point separates the two teams, with Ham-Kam sitting in second place with 25 and Ulf one point and two spaces behind.
Neither team is currently listing any injuries or suspensions.
Hønefoss BK - Kongsvinger IL
Steve Clark and Hønefoss will hope to get their promotion campaign back on track on Sunday when they host Kongsvinger.
Kenneth Di Vita Jensen will likely see minutes off the bench.
Hønefoss put on a lackluster display to get shut out by Sandnes Ulf in their last game two weeks ago.
While they are still within reach of the top of the division, the fact that they have only won once in their last three games has left them with a growing gap to their goal of re-admission to the top flight.
While their opponents Kongsvinger have struggled for consistency lately, and have not won consecutive games in over two months, they have made a knack of putting up bawdy numbers on the scoreboard, most recently in their 3-3 draw against Ham-Kam.
Hønefoss defender Lennart Steffensen is still recovering from meniscus surgery while midfielder Tor Øyvind Hovda is unlikely to participate after picking up an ankle injury in midweek training.
Kongsvinger are missing long-term injured midfielder Kai Olav Ryen and midfielder Henry Joseph Shindika.
Josh Gatt is still sidelined with injury for Molde and Sean Cunningham will likely not make it off the bench on Sunday when they try to solidify their first-place standing as they host FK Haugesund.
Joseph Bendik will be backup keeper for Sogndal IL on Sunday when they host Sarpsborg 08 FF.
Kyle Helton will hope to see minutes from the bench on Sunday as Mjøndalen try to break their three-game winless streak on their visit to Alta IF.
Colin Burns will be on the bench as Sandefjord's backup keeper on Sunday when they visit Strømmen IF.