JOHN KRETLOW - Friday, September 16, 2011
The American trio at IFK Mariehamn look for their third win in a row while Jeremy Vuolo and AC Oulu eye first place in the Ykkönen.
Haka - IFK Mariehamn
Josh Wicks, Mason Trafford, and Giuseppe Funicello look to help IFK Mariehamn continue their good run against Haka in Monday Veikkausliiga action.
Wicks and Trafford are likely to start, while Funicello could get some time off the bench.
Mariehamn are coming off two straight wins, including a 5-2 romping of RoPS last week. Before this good run, Mariehamn had not won a game since a July 10th match against Haka.
Haka is coming off a draw against Jaro, but the team will set its sites on three points against Mariehamn. Currently they are sixth in the standings and three points ahead of their visitors.
Aleksei Kangaskolkka, Ekhiabhi Okodugha, Mikko Paatelainen, Markus Paatelainen, Fernando de Abreu, and Petteri Forsell are all possible omissions due to injury for Mariehamn.
PoPa - PS Kemi Kings
Daniel Stevens and Kyle Luetkehans look to help PS Kemi Kings get an important victory over PoPa.
Stevens started and went the distance in Kemi's win over KPV last week, and should again be in the starting lineup. Luetkehans was suffering from a sore hamstring last week, but could get some playing time against PoPa.
Although Kemi won last week, they are still pitted in the relegation zone. A win this weekend though would give the team more confidence going down the stretch and could soon put Kemi to within striking distance of safety.
PoPa are 12th place and eleven points from safety. They will need to start recording wins immediately if they want to play Ykkönen soccer next season.
Kemi's Juhani Himanka and Henri Lousteen will return from suspension and are likely to feature.
Defenders' Joni Vuorinen and Jussi Äijälä are both injured and questionable to play for PoPa.
Viikingit - AC Oulu
Jeremy Vuolo and high flying AC Oulu target first place in their game against Viikingit.
Vuolo started and played ninety minutes last week's shutout. The American goalie should again feature.
Oulu smashed Espoo last week 7-0 and will look to continue their good run against Viikingit. They are currently in second place but only trail league leaders Lahti by two points.
Viikingit is in fifth place and is only four points from Oulu. A win this week would put them within striking distance of first place and a promotion spot.
KPV - HIFK
Kellan Wilson and HIFK take on relegation fighters KPV in Ykkönen action this weekend.
Wilson started and went the distance last week and could get the start once again on Saturday. Walter Viitala was the starting goalie for a large part of this season, but an injury forced him to the bench and Wilson has taken advantage of his opportunity.
HIFK is coming off a 0-0 tie against JIPPO, but they will be aiming for three points this weekend. They are currently eight points from the relegation zone.
KPV are currently looking at third tier soccer next season unless they go on a win streak for the final games of the season. A win this weekend could get the momentum they need to save their season.
HIFK's Timo Priha and Mikko Halme are likely to miss due to injury.
Etchu Tabe is suffering from a knee injury and is questionable for RoPS as they take on JJK.