Rosenborg vs Stabaek by 20Legend
It is another meeting between the currently two best teams in Tippeligaen as 1st placed Rosenborg welcomes 2nd placed Stabaek for the second time in under two weeks. They both met at the same pitch on September 14th were Rosenborg took a close 1-0 win in the last possible minute of the match. Rosenborg probably won the league with those three points, but made it a bit more exciting as they lost to Molde (1-0) last weekend. Stabaek won their match against Tromso (2-1) in the last seconds as well. That makes the gap down to eight points at this moment of the season. However, Stabaek still has a chance to kick Rosenborg out of the Norwegian Cup in tonight’s semi-final.
Rosenborg delivered a medium performance in the derby against Molde last weekend as they deservedly lost 1-0. The performance in the first half was alright, but they let Molde take all the big chances and the momentum in the second half. Molde scored already after 53 minutes, but should have scored both 2-0 and 3-0 towards the final whistle. Rosenborg has dominated every match in the cup also this season. They have produced excellent offensive play even if their opponents in the early rounds off course lacked quality. They have beaten Vuku (3-0), Floya (6-0), Levanger (7-0), Tromsdalen (7-1) and Mjondalen (4-0) before tonight’s opponent. Even if you consider the low quality of both Vuku and Floya especially, Rosenborg has produced 27-1 in five games, which is impressive either way.
More good news is that defender Johan Bjordal (7/2), reserve keeper Alexander Lund Hansen (1/0) and left-back Mikael Dorsin (16/1) are back in the lineup tonight. The same goes for the midfielder-duo Fredrik Midsjo (23/3) and Ole Selnaes (20/1) who were both suspended in the game against Molde. Their captain and defender Tore Reginiussen (1/0) is also back after being kept out for the whole season with an injury. However, he plays for the reserve team in order to get some match training again.
Stabaek was obviously crushed as they lost in the last reaming seconds of the game on Lerkendal. It was a game where Stabaek could have scored as well, but they were not distinctive enough when they got the chance. They had a goal disallowed for offside and an unbelievable chance that was saved on the line via the crossbar by a player from Rosenborg. However, they got a win like that in return as they beat Tromso (2-1) last weekend. After leading 1-0 for most of the game, Tromso made it 1-1 towards the end of the game.
It looked like Stabaek were going to lose two golden points, but a marvelous shot by Muhammed Keita in the 93rd minute made it 2-1. The three points gave the players some faith in the remaining six games. Even if it should be impossible to beat Rosenborg in Tippeligaen this season, they have the chance to have a payback by knocking them out of the cup tonight. Stabaek have still impressed all season long and the same goes for their performances in the cup so far. They have beaten Runar (0-6), KFUM Oslo (1-3), Senja (1-3), Strommen (1-5) and Sandefjord (0-1) so far. The win against Sandefjord was not as easy as predicted for them, but a huge solo effort by Adama Diomande was enough to get them through to the semifinal. Stabaek have no important injuries to care about which means that all players are available for selection tonight.
Both teams have impressed a lot this season, but Rosenborg seems to have the extra power this season. This will be another open match even if Rosenborg is favorites based on the season and the match on September 14th. However, Stabaek was close on scoring first in that match and things could have been different then. They are clearly interested in delivering a payback against Rosenborg tonight, even if it will be very difficult again. The selling of Adama Diomande to Hull has off course influenced their offensive power, but it is still quality on top to make goals. Stabaek clearly shows the will to score goals and only need better precision than last time they were here.