Monday, September 20, 2004

Danish football in trouble

Mr. Olsen, the excellent Danish national coach, has for long been complaining about the lack of technical skills of players in the Danish league.
When looking at most games in the Danish "Superliga", Mr. Olsen is absolutely right. Danish clubs are presently in such a crisis, making the Danish leagues into one of the worse in Europe.
For a proud Dane this is hard to accept, but all the more obvious when looking at the realities: the defending Danish Champions from FC Copenhagen (FCK) were humilliated by Gorica from Slovenia in the second round qualifier for the Champions League: after winning 1-2 away, they lost 0-5 in Copenhagen. This was even more humilliating when Gorica was eliminated 0-9 by AS Monaco in the next round...
One of the traditionally best Danish teams Brondby, was also eliminated from the UEFA Cup by the little known Lithuanian team Ventspils. The result is that Lithuania has more teams in the first round of the UEFA Cup than Denmark.
The only Danish team left in Europe is Aalborg B, which is up against a well-playing Auxerre.

Looking at the Danish league, things also look strange: FCK is 9th in the league. Yesterday they lost 1-3 at home to Brondby, and played horribly. The team leading in Denmark is a team with the internationally difficult name FC Midtjylland. They are primarily leading because of the greatest star in Denmark right now, the Egyptian player Mohamed Zidan. His technical skills are so far above the average Danish player, that he will probably leave Denmark soon.

Now, I should be a little optimistic on behalf of Danish football: there are many new young players. Particularly Brondby, with the legendary Michael Laudrup as coach, is giving wide possibility for young talented players in the Danish League. These were the ones who defeated FCK yesterday, and hopefully will help improve the Danish league in the future.

But Danish clubs will continue to be of the 4th division of Europe for many years...

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