Malmo vs Goteborg by Sweem
Allsvenskan enters a crucial stage as the title hunt is really on the radar, and to add to the occasion we will have the biggest match Swedish football can offer when the hosts Malmo are trying to increase the gap to chasing Norrkoping. Goteborg and Malmo are the two most successful clubs in Swedish history, so there is an obvious rivalry despite the geographical distance is not really a local derby.
All eyes will be on Swedbank Stadium in Malmo when the sold out stadium will boil, there will be nerves and more importantly a fantastic crowd to enjoy for the ones who loves the sport. Beneath the atmosphere is a rivalry which which was interrupted when these two teams met earlier in the season, where chaos escalated and eventually gave Malmo a 3-0 victory after a crowd incident. It is just an example of when feelings take over and what it means for the supporters - even though the behavior is beyond stupid.
The stakes are much higher this time, especially for Malmo who are in the middle of a title race and have had pretty significant changes in the squad. First and foremost, top scorer Vidar Orn Kjartansson (xx/xx) was sold, which raised a lot of worries as to whether Malmo have now sold the title as well. Behind this decision, it should not be forgotten that the squad has depth and no one is irreplaceable. Alexander Jeremejeff was signed from BK Hacken and is a young talented forward with potential to impress, especially when playing along side an experienced forward like Markus Rosenberg. Left back Behrang Safari also signed from FC Basel, so in fact Malmo look more solid than they did in the early phase of the season.
On the negative side for the hosts, midfielder Magnus Wolff Eikrem (20/3) will miss the match. He has provieded 15 assists and it is obviously a dimension that Malmo will miss in this game. The Swedish U21 international box-to-box midfielder Erdal Rakip will be the replacement, and suggests that Malmo will have more control on the midfield with a very strong and durable players centrally to win the battles. Coach Allan Kuhn is very fond of high pressing style which requires heavy running to grab command of the battles in the middle and quickly turn the game into attack.
Goteborg have fallen far behind in the title race and they are really only aiming to clinch a spot which secures Europa League possibilities next year. A victory against their rivals could mean that Goteborg climbs to third place, but it is far from easy to accomplish at Swedbank Stadium. They are less individually skillful than their opponents but are difficult to break down due to being solid organized and a strong counter attacking team. They had a tough loss in Azerbaijan against Qarabag over two legs, but bounced back a bit fortunately versus a desperate Helsingborg side.
The visitors will have a fairly healthy squad, with the scratch being striker Mikael Boman (15/4).
There is incredibly much at stake for both sides, but no doubt - way more for Malmo. The rivalry on te field will be fierce and it is a completely new situation for Malmo this time as they can not count on their best assist provider nor on their top scorer, which is the reason the odds have increased a tad on the hosts. The truth is that the visitors would take one point and be satisfied, so we can expect low risk taking, and Malmo will take the necessary initiatives and push for a victory. After all, the hosts are 8-1-1 at home and Goteborg are 3-3-4 away, so all important factors are pointing towards a home victory, which looks very appealing at this price.