Sweden squad named for Cyprus camp
The most interesting to see in Dennerby's first 2007 squad was his choice for the midfield - how he replaced the retired trio Fagerström, Moström and Sjöström (and for the first time I noticed that they all have surnames ending in "ström". Peculiar, isn't it? Not that "ström" is an unusual part of a Swedish surname, it's probably one of the most common and an evidence of the Swedish fascination with nature: it means swiftly flowing water. But it can also mean current as in sea current or electric current. This was a ridiculously long parenthesis). So we're looking at Nilla Fischer, Frida Nordin and Salina Olsson instead. Not that exciting. And since Hedvig Lindahl isn't available, Umeå's newly signed keeper Carola Söberg makes the trip and could get her first national team cap. And Hanna Ljungberg is intentionally left out - Dennerby thinks she needs to rest.
|Sweden's squad||Date of birth||Caps||Goals|
Malmö FF DFF
|Carola Söberg||Umeå IK||820729||-||-|
|Sara Larsson||Linköpings FC||790513||68||6|
|Anna Paulson||Umeå IK||840229||2||-|
|Stina Segerström||KIF/Örebro DFF||820617||10||-|
|Karolina Westberg||Umeå IK||780516||114||-|
|Frida Östberg||Linköpings FC||771210||49||2|
Malmö FF DFF
|Maria Karlsson||Linköpings FC||830514||7||-|
|Frida Nordin||Malmö FF DFF||820523||25||2|
|Salina Olsson||Kopparbergs/Göteborg FC||780829||61||9|
|Caroline Seger||Linköpings FC||850319||22||2|
|Therese Sjögran||Malmö FF DFF||770408||103||7|
|Josefine Öqvist||Linköpings FC||830723||33||6|
|Therese Lundin||Malmö FF DFF||790303||40||7|
|Lotta Schelin||Kopparbergs/Göteborg FC||840227||33||7|
Dennerby visited Linköping yesterday on his tour to national team players. He had talks with Sara Larsson, Frida Östberg, Caroline Seger, Josefine Öqvist, Hedvig Lindahl, Maria Karlsson and Maria Aronsson and would have liked to get a one-on-one with Linköping defender Lotta Rohlin, who unfortunately was in Germany visiting her boyfriend. "She has for a long time been playing on a consistently high level, and that's what makes a player interesting for the national team", he commented on Rohlin, who at 26 has never played for the full national team.
Svensk Fotboll: Dam: Årets första landskamper
Corren: Rohlin aktuell för Dennerby
Training matches: Malmö draws Kolbotn
Malmö: Caroline Jönsson - Therese Jönsson (80 Lina Nilsson), Malin Levenstad, Emma Wilhelmsson, Nera Smajic - Nanna Johansen (66 Anna Mörstam), Therese Sjögran, Nilla Fischer, Emma Stålhammar (76 Dora Stefansdottir) - Manon Melis (52 Frida Nordin), Therese Lundin
Goals: 1-0 Nanna Johansen, 1-1 Solveig Gulbrandsen, 1-2 Ingvild Landvik Isaksen, 2-2 Therese Sjögran (PK)
The first out-door match of the year was played on a windy and rainy field just north of Malmö. Norwegian champions and UEFA Cup semifinalists Kolbotn went south for what is getting to become their traditional pre-season starters against Malmö FF and Danish perennial champions Brøndby. The Brøndby match was cancelled due to snow, but the Malmö match was played.
In spite of the lousy weather and it being the first big field match in quite a while for both teams, they put up a pretty good match. Malmö's coach Jörgen Petersson was pleased (which is unusual), especially with the back-line, where Therese Jönsson (who just days before signed for another 2 years with the club) and Malmö debutant Nera Smajic impressed on the outsides. The other debutant, Manon Melis, did good under the circumstances but will be better when she has adapted to the faster play in Sweden. "I had to run a lot", Manon commented after the match. "It's a big difference from the league in Holland, it's much faster." Petersson also wants to match her carefully - moving from from Holland to Malmö has doubled the training intensity for her - so 50 minutes a match is as much as she will get for a while.
Sydsvenskan: Oavgjort för MFF i träningspremiären
Three Damallsvenskan players in FIFA World Stars Team
There will be a scheduling problem for the Damallsvenskan trio. Marta plays the UEFA Women's Cup final on the 21st and has a Damallsvenskan match on the 25th followed by the return leg of the UEFA Cup final the 29th. Umeå's manager Roland Arnqvist commented the news with a "Yeah, good luck trying to get her to China for the game" and I think it is pretty obvious that Marta, no matter the honour of being chosen for a World Star team, would rather play the Arsenal matches.
Bente Nordby and Lotta Schelin has Damallsvenskan games scheduled for the same day as the FIFA match. They are both essential players (to put it mildly) for their teams and I wouldn't let them go. But I'm not running their clubs.
FIFA: FIFA Women's World Stars v. China to open programme
Västerbottens Folkblad: Marta missar världsmatch
Damallsvenskan schedule for 2007 announced
Because of the long break for China, the schedule is tighter than usual with a lot of mid-week matches, but there is so far no complaints. Not even from Umeå (!), that on the contrary are particulary pleased that the season doesn't finish until early November. That will make it easier for the team to stay match fit for the UEFA Women's Cup quarterfinals in mid November, that Umeå has already penned in.
Västerbottens Folkblad: UIK nöjt med spelschemat
Svensk Fotboll: The full Damallsvenskan schedule
Umeå on Ramona Bachman: She could be a new Marta
16 year old Swiss prodigy Ramona Bachman started her 10 day try-out at Umeå last Thursday. She is not the established world class player, that Umeå is looking for, but they are nonetheless very interested. "She could be a new Marta", says head coach Andrée Jeglertz. And there are more clubs that are aware of her qualities. Besides Umeå, Djurgården/Älvsjö has announced interest and so has an unnamed German club as well as the ever present FC Indiana in USA. FC Indiana has come pretty far in their contacts and a few days ago released a press statement that a contract were "imminent".
Ramona Bachman told the press after her first training session that the level was very high and that it was a very special thing to train with Marta. In spite of her age the young Swiss is very determined: "I want to be a professional footballer, so I am prepared to move abroad".
Umeå's manager Roland Arnqvist says that he won't make up his mind until after the try-out: "She could be of interest for this year's squad, she might not play for us until next year or maybe not at all."
Västerbottenskuriren: "Hon kan vara en ny Marta"
Västerbottens Folkblad: Supertalangen tränar med UIK
EDIT: I must learn to keep up with the local news stations. A nice Bachman (and Marta) clip from Västerbottensnytt. Thank's to Agent_Westberg at forum.football.co.uk for the heads-up.
In other Umeå news, the player to replace Malin Moström might be - Marta. Head coach Andrée Jeglertz tells a local newspaper that they will not find a midfielder to fully replace Moström. Instead a probable solution is to pull back Marta from the attack and put her in a "number 10 position", between the two remaining attackers and the three midfielders. Marta has all the qualities that is needed to be successfull in this kind of Totti or Zidane positon. Unlike for example Hanna Ljungberg, Marta doesn't take many forward runs without the ball but can with her speed and superior ball control easily move into position from a place a bit further back. And from the 2006 season, we can see that even when she isn't the one that scores, she is almost always involved in the set-up.
Västerbottenskuriren: Marta som Totti
Swiss teenage talent visits Umeå for try-out
Seems like an interesting player, but I'm sure we can agree that she is not the world class midfielder Umeå is looking for.
Västerbottenskuriren: Schweizisk spelare provtränar med UIK
Qbik midfielder Elina Johansson is training with her old team Gideonsberg. The 20 year old had problems getting time with Qbik last year. A lot of details remains to be solved, but Gideonsberg would be happy to take her back.
Värmlands Folkblad: Gideonsberg vill värva från Qbik
1st division side Stattena's starting goalkeeper Maria Cederholm has decided to accept an offer to fill the position as back-up goalie for Linköping FC. Spending a lot of time on the bench doesn't scare her - "I was the back-up when Stattena played in Damallsvenskan, but I still got to start in some matches."
Sweden U-18 forward Kosovare Asllani, who scored 18 goals for her 2nd division side Vimmerby IF last season, has been offered a deal by Linköping. She is young with a lot of potential, says Linköping's Bengt Ekholm, and will probably get some time in the first team already this season. Asllani, who also has an offer from 1st division Östers IF, says playing for Linköping is a big challenge.
Corren: Cederholm vill utvecklas i Linköping
Linköpings Tidning: Räkna med Asllani i LFC
Dennerby says Hanna Ljungberg will be key player in China
National team head coach Thomas Dennerby visited Umeå to meet and talk with candidates for the World Cup squad. He has about 30 prospects on his list, of which 21 will make the trip to China.In Umeå he had face-to-face meetings with goalie Carola Söberg, defenders Maria Bergkvist, Anna Paulson and Karolina Westberg and forwards Hanna Ljungberg and Madeleine Edlund.
Sweden are having two big national team meetings in the spring, on Cyprus in February and the Algarve Cup in Portugal in March and Dennerby hopes he will be able to give everyone on his list a chance show themselves at at least one of these. And he has not written off the possibility that someone not on his list will impress enough to make the final team.
Dennerby also says that he has no intention to find a replacement for Malin Moström. "We will have to change our way to play." Instead of a fast offensive midfielder in the center of the field, there might be more movement on the wings. "We will have to test this during the spring". He adds that Hanna Ljungberg will be a key player: "She only played 5 of our qualification matches but scored 10 goals." His main concern is that she stays healthy and he will probably keep her out of some of the spring events in order to keep her that way.
Västerbottenskuriren: Dennerby letade VM-joker i Umeå
Västerbottens Folkblad: Dennerby sonderar terrängen inför VM
Linköping: Jill Oakes to be followed by Milbrett or White
Jill Oakes talks to local newspaper Corren on her first day of her two week trial in Linköping. Apart from moving away from her boyfriend in Los Angeles (Lakers rookie Jordan Farmer, if a quick glance in Google's direction is to be trusted), she thinks most things points in favour of moving to Sweden. "Everybody says Sweden has the best league", she says. She has been talking to Tiffeny Milbrett, who played with Linköping FC last season, and that didn't scare her away. She describes herself as talented and easy to work with and that her strong sides are that she is reliable and gets the job done.
Linköping's sport director Bengt Ekholm says that the club is leaning towards Jill Oakes and Tiffeny Milbrett for the 2007 season, but they see Kacey White as an alternative if the deal with Milbrett doesn't work out. White played with Bälinge last year, and the Uppsala club has offered her a new deal for 2007. Linköping probably have to make up their minds pretty fast if they want her.
Corren: Oakes mer slitvarg än showartist, pictures
Corren: White ett alternativ i LFC?
Umeå prepares for new season with match against Russia
"We have been having problems getting good competition for training matches" says manager Roland Arnqvist. So when the Russian national team made an inquiry through an agent, it couldn't be much better.
Umeå is still looking for someone to fill in for retired Malin Moström "and if we just had been looking for a good player, we had already found her", comments Arnqvist. But Umeå wants something better than just good.
Aftonbladet: Träningsspelar mot landslag
Matches between Damallsvenskan clubs and national teams isn't the most common set-up, but it has happened before. Only last spring Malmö FF defeated Scotland's national team in a pre-season training match.
Sanna Talonen signs with Bälinge
Fellow Finland international Heidi Matinlassi has renewed her contract, as well as defenders Malin Ericsson and Linn Fors.
Upsala Nya Tidning: Ännu en finländska förstärker Bälinge
Merited American midfielder trials with Linköping
Linköping's sport director Bengt Ekholm puts big hopes in Oakes. He is pleased that the club can have a look at her before signing any papers, but says "I will be surprised if she doesn't have a very successfull try-out with us."
Jill Oakes says that she sees playing for Linköping, "one of the best teams in what is probably the best league in the world", as a way to develop and be able to compete for a spot on USA's Olympic team in 2008.
Linköping FC: LFC testar Jill Oakes
Trailist Johansson joins Umeå
The 20 year old former Mallbacken forward Maja Johansson only needed a week to convince Umeå's management. Maja and the club has reached a verbal agreement. "I am surprised and it feels unexpected", says Maja, who was thrilled already by being invited to train with the Swedish champions.
Not only Maja is surprised. Her home town newspaper Värmlands Folkblad bluntly asked Umeå's manager Roland Arnqvist "How can a player that only scored three goals last season be of interest for you?" Arnqvist answers that she is young and shows a lot of potential. Given the right environment , she can develop into a really good player. He is a bit more vague when it comes to the actual contract. "We're taking a day at the time. Maja will be a Umeå player and then we'll see what happens."
A reasonable guess is that she will spend a lot of time on the bench and possibly on loan to 1st division teams. But, as Maja says herself: "You learn a lot from just training with these players".
Värmlands Folkblad: Maja skriver på för Umeå
Västerbottens Folkblad: Johansson klar för UIK
American try-out at Linköping
Linköping is also close to finalizing a deal with Tiffeny Milbrett. There are still some details concerning her transatlantic committments to solve.
Midfielders Maria Lindström and Frida Carlswärd has renewed their contracts for 2007, while defender Eva Skärby has decided for 1st division side Jitex.
Linköping is pleased with Malmö FF keeper Jenny Olsson, but both the club and Jenny wants to wait for the outcome of Hedvig Lindahl's knee operation before making any decisions. Jenny has stated that she is not interested in moving to Linköping for a back-up position. If Hedvig can expect a speedy recovery from the injury, Jenny will stay with Malmö. Or maybe findning a local 1st division side.
Corren: LFC testar mittfältare från USA, MFF:s reservmålvakt kan ta över efter Lindahl
Sydsvenskan: Linköping vill ha MFF-målvakt
Qbik midfielder/forward Anna Nilsson has finally decided to re-sign. The club's chairman Lars-Inge Hallstensson says that this completes the 2007 squad.
Värmlands Folkblad: Anna Nilsson fortsätter att spela i Qbik
No more recruits to KIF Örebro
The club has plans going to Scasna's old club Sparta Prague for a March training camp and possibly developing a cooperation with the club, the best side in Czech Republic.
In the club's plans are also trying to defend their Swedish Futsal championship. Only three of the Damallsvenskan clubs are participating in this years championships, apart from Kif Örebro also Qbik and Falköpings KIK. The general opinion seems to be that the Futsal season interfers with the important pre-season training, but Sundhage sees benefit to gain for the outdoor game from the high pace and technical demands of playing futsal.
Nerikes Allehanda: Räkna inte med nya amerikanskor i KIF
Svensk Fotboll: Futsal: KIF Örebro vill försvara guldet
Marta back from Brazil - to play midfield??
But a place on the midfield in Umeå might be in her future. The club is still looking for a replacement for Moström, but manager Roland Arnqvist has set a deadline at February 15. "We are having three agents working for us going through the market with a fine comb, but if we fail, we can easily see Marta taking a step down to the midfield".
Västerbottens Folkblad: Bästa Marta hemma
Svt: not a clip really, but you can see the interview with Marta about 6 minutes into last night's sports news
Expressen: Moströms plats kan tas av - Marta
Injured Lindahl in surprising good mood, Malmö's Olsson covers?
If the rehabilitation will be lengthy it will deminish her chances to go to the World Cup with the national team, but that is not in her thoughts right now. And there will be more championships.
Lindahl's replacement seems to be Malmö FF's back-up goalkeeper Jenny Olsson. The 21 year old trained with Linköping on Wednesday. She has drawn out on her decision wether to stay in Malmö or try to find a club where she will get more time in goal (1st division side Kristianstads DFF has been mentioned) and is currently unattached. No decision has been made yet by either Linköping or Olsson.
In Umeå there are of course speculation over what this means for Umeå IK's newly signed goalkeeper Carola Söberg. Lindahl will under no circumstances go to Sweden's February training camp on Cyprus or Algarve Cup and Söberg is definitely on the top of the list of replacements, says national team coach Thomas Dennerby.
Corren: ”Förvånad över att jag är så positiv”
Damfotboll.com: Malmömålvakt löser Linköpings problem?
Västerbottenskuriren: Lindahls knäskada öppnar för Söberg
TV4: A really short interview (video)
Danish midfielder turns down Umeå
3F Fodbold: Umeå interesseret i Johanna
Malmö FF midfielder Emma Stålhammar, named as a main interest for ambitious 1st division side Kristianstads DFF, has decided to stay with the Malmö club for another season.
Malmö FF: Ännu en spelare klar!
Lindahl facing several months of rehabilitation after knee injury
The knee injury Hedvig Lindahl suffered last week will keep her from playing at least 3, maybe 6 months.
The result from the MRI examination, made public today, revealed damage to the meniscus and a cruciate ligament. The full extent of the injury will not be known until the operation, scheduled two weeks from now, but will require several months of rehabilitation. In best case she will be back in time for the Damallsvenskan opener in April, a more severe injury can keep her out of the game for 6 months or more.
Maja Johansson set for trial with Umeå
Västerbottens Folkblad: Sunnanå SK kan bli Umeå IK
Värmlands Folkblad: Maja Johansson provtränar med svenska mästarna
Hedvig Lindahl injured
Linköping's sport director Bengt Ekholm reveals that he is already looking for a replacement if it comes to the worst, but "there are maybe eight or nine keepers in the world as good as Hedvig". He is looking both in Sweden and abroad.
EDIT: Yes, the young American prodigy Danesha Adams is mentioned in the Corren article, but obviously not as a contender for the goal-keeping spot. Corren writes that an unnamed US player will join Linköping next week for a try-out, and Adams has been mentioned. Sport director Ekholm only says that he's heard the name, but that she's not being persued by the club at the moment.
Corren: Ny målvakt sökes - i hela världen
TV4: Skadade Lindahl på sträckbänken (video)
More Finns to Bälinge?
Bälinge's coach Zaine Söderlund says that Talonen, with her speed and box-play, could be a good complement to Annette Kent, who he sees in a more target-player position.
If the transfer comes true, this will be the 4th Finnish national team player to sign for Bälinge this winter.
Upsala Nya Tidning: Bälinge jagar finländskt
Djurgården/Älvsjö has signed a 17 year old goalkeeper, Sofia Åhman, to replace Pernilla Ebberyd, who went to Hammarby, as back-up behind Bente Nordby. The club states that they will probably sign one more goalkeeper, which seems sensible.
Djurgården/Älvsjö: Sofia Åhman i målet
Qbik board greenlights Nigerian come-back
Värmlands Folkblad: Ett väntat besked
Malmö players leaving and Malmö players renewing
Midfielder Frida Nordin and attacker Anna Mörstam has renewed their contracts with Malmö. Nordin, member of the Swedish 2003 World Cup squad, was mostly a starter last year while Mörstam didn't get much time and was eventually loaned out to 1st division side Öster. She scored lots of goals during her late season loan period and seems confident she can compete for a starting position. Two youngsters from Malmö's successfull youth programme - Lina Rehov, 18 year old defender who made her first appearence for the full team last year, and 16 year old attacker Cecilia Kotte - has both signed long term contracts with their club.
On the other hand has winger/defender Johanna Rosén decided to return to Kristianstad DFF after one season with Malmö FF. Rosén played 10 matches for Malmö the 2006 season and hopes to be able to play a more important role with her old club. Kristianstad has stated that their ambition is to win promotion to Damallsvenskan. Rosén will be followed by soon to turn 20 Vlora Bajraktaraj, a homegrown Malmö midfielder who made her debut already three years ago, but has failed establish herself.
A third player is rumoured to leave Malmö for ambitious Kristianstad, back-up goalkeeper Jenny Olsson. Olsson has been on the bench behind Caroline Jönsson for several years now and admits that she is "leaning towards chosing Kristianstad".
Sydsvenskan: Två spelare förlänger med MFF Dam
Norra Skåne: Malmömålvakt blir nästa nyförvärv i KDFF?
Kristianstadbladet: Rosen är tillbaka i KDFF: "Målet är allsvenskan"
Malmö FF: Ytterligare två spelare klara för 2007
Nigerian FA concedes to Qbik demands
The Nigerian national team players, midfielder Maureen Mmadu, and defenders Faith Ikidi and Yinka Kudaisi, lost their jobs with the club when they left without permission to join Nigeria in the African Championships. Qbik's board will assemble next week to deal with the matter.
Damfotboll.com: Nigerias FF går med på QBIKs krav
Kalmari leaves Djurgården for AIK
Djurgården/Älvsjö's sport director Micke Söderman says there is no reason for panic: "We still have a very strong squad, and we will probably add yet another player to it". Söderman adds that Kalmari gave signals already during the fall, that she might want to leave. There are several reasons for that, Söderman explains: Finland didn't manage to qualify for the World Cup, she has just married and she has her education (teaching degree) to pay attention to. "I think Laura was convinced that a new club environment and playing with old friends from Finland and Umeå will be a like new start for her."
AIK: Laura Kalmari till AIK
Damfotboll.com: Ännu ett jättekap för AIK - Laura Kalmari !
Mäkinen ends international career
After 15 years and more than 100 matches for Finland, Anne Mäkinen has decided to end her international career. Mäkinen, that made her debut as a 15 year old in a match against Soviet Union 1991, is praised for her leadership and immense influence in the national team. She singles out Finland's successful European Championship run 2005, that ended with a semifinal against Germany, as her best memory. She admits that she most probably would have stayed another year if Finland had qualified for the World Cup, but decided to announce her retirement now to give the national team time to prepare for the 2009 European Championships, that will be hosted by Finland.
In an interview with the finnish YLE network's Swedish language channel, she says that she will continue to play club football, presently for Bälinge, as long as it is fun. And it still is.
YLE: Mäkinen tackar för sig, ”The one and only”
Meier stays with Qbik, Nykvist returns from maternity leave
Qbik has also finally been able to solve all the problems around the transfer of the two Jitex players Therese Björck, 25 year old midfielder, and Amelie Rybeck, 24 year old defender. No word on exactly what the transfer fee to Jitex finally landed at, but not the SEK 50,000 that Jitex originally demanded.
Värmlands Folkblad: Meier väljer Qbik
Malin Nykvist, a 27 year old midfielder with national team experience and two Swedish championships with Djurgården/Älvsjö, has decided to return to top football with Hammarby. Nykvist, who was really close to being picked for both the 2003 Swedish World Cup team and the 2005 Euro team, left football 2005, not only pregnant but also run-down by the strains of trying to combine play with full-time work and still having a life. She now seems happy and eager to start playing again and Hammarby's sport director Anneli Norén praises her come-back and says that Nykvist will become a very important player in the team.
Dagens Nyheter: Mammaledig landslagsspelare till Hammarby
19 year old forward talent Maja Krantz finally decided to join her former Stattena teammate Caroline Seger at Linköping, turning down Malmö FF and college football in USA. She doesn't think she has a starting position waiting for her, but will try to get as much time on the field as possible.
Linköping's squad is now almost set, but they still need a back-up goalkeeper and are, as previously reported here, trying to find two US players.
Corren: Talang klar för LFC
Jitex defender Emma Herbring is ready to activate the boy-friend clause she has in her two-year contract. Emma moved from KIF Örebro to Jitex when her boy-friend Ola Toivonen got signed by the Göteborg side Örgryte and part of her deal was that she could leave if Ola moved on. Just recently Ola, about to get his first full cap for Sweden this winter, finalized a transfer to Malmö FF for a substantial amount of money. Malmö FF's coach Jörgen Pettersson says he usually doesn't comment on transfers until the papers are signed, but that Emma is a good player that will get even better and he has announced his interest to Jitex.
Värmlands Folkblad: Ola Toivonen får sällskap av flickvännen
Finally, the USA W-league club Jersey Sky Blue today confirms the signing of Mallbacken's Erla Arnardottir, four season Damallsvenskan veteran and midfielder in Iceland's national team.
Sky Blue Soccer: Arnardóttir Signs On with Jersey Sky Blue