Jane Törnqvist denies Potsdam transfer rumour

In an interview with swedish news-site Damfotboll.com, Jane Törnqvist denies any deal with Turbine Potsdam: "I don't know where they got that", she says and adds that a transfer is not on her immediate agenda. "Right now I'm only focusing on Saturday's match against Själevad in Damallsvenskan."

The origin of this rumour is probably to be found in an article in Potsdam's local paper PNN. It has today a long story on how Turbine changed their focus from Norway's Ingvild Stensland to Jane Törnqvist during the Euros in England. It seems pretty well researched and places Törnqvist in the middle of the negotiations, but the only first hand information in it are quotes from Turbine's head coach Bernd Schröder.
PNN: Clou gelungen: Jane Törnquist kommt

Jane Törnqvist leaves Djurgården/Älvsjö for Turbine Potsdam

The german women's football site FFNews.de reports that swedish national team and Djurgården/Älvsjö defender Jane Törnqvist has agreed to join Turbine Potsdam for the 2005/06 Bundesliga season. Turbine coach Bernd Schröder says they have a verbal agreement and the papers will be signed mid July.
FFNews.de: Schwedin Jane Törnquist verstärkt Turbine-Elf

Swedish Cup: Wins for all Damallsvenskan teams

IF Norvalla - Malmö FF   0-4 (0-3)
Malmö FF: Caroline Jönsson - Malin Andersson (75 Sara Stålhammar), Denise Reddy, Therese Jönsson, Jenny Engwall - Anna Mörstam, Nilla Fischer, Therese Sjögran (60 Mia Westerblad), Emma Stålhammar (75 Malin Levenstad) - Asthildur Helgadottir, Therese Lundin
Goals: 0-1 Malin Andersson (1), 0-2 Therese Lundin (17), 0-3 Therese Sjögran (29), 0-4 Mia Westerblad (69)
Attendance: 675
Malmö opened with a direct corner-kick by Malin Andersson already in the 1st minute against 1st division side Norvalla, but it was noticable that the team hasn't played for more than a month. Both pace and passing were sub-standard. For Norvalla this was the big match of the season and the 675 attanding the game was a record for the club.
Malmö FF
Hallands Nyheter: När idolerna kom till byn

Eskilstuna United - KIF Örebro 1-5 (1-2)
Goals: 0-1 Emilia Eriksson (14), 0-2 Marie Hammarström (19), 1-2 Andrea Comaneci (42 PK), 1-3 Marie Pettersson (86), 1-4 Lisa Dahlqvist (89), 1-5 Marie Hammarström
Attendance: 352
"A great match to get us going again after the long break", says KIF coach Pia Sundhage. Eskilstuna, a 1st divison side, put up a good fight and not until the last minutes did KIF manage to secure their win.
Folket: United pressade KIF Örebro
Nerikes Allehanda: Femetta i cupen av KIF Örebro

Dalsjöfors GoIF - Kopparbergs/Göteborg FC 0-7 (0-1)
Kopparbergs/Göteborg: Maria Edman - Camilla Schelin, Sofia Dammström, Frida Höglund, Marlene Sjöberg - Maria Karlsson, Johanna Almgren, Lisa Ek (55 Sofia Palmqvist), Therese Bjurenlind - Lotta Schelin,   Rebecca Ljungdahl (50 Sofie Andersson)
Goals: 0-1 Therese Bjurenlid (25), 0-2 Lotta Shelin (49), 0-3 Johanna Almgren (66), 0-4 Sofia Andersson (81), 0-5 Camilla Shelin (88), 0-6 Therese Bjurenlid (89), 0-7 Sofia Andersson (90)
Attendance: 327
Göteborg played a high paced game against the 1st division side Dalsjöfors and it made result in the second half.
Borås Tidning: Tack ska ni ha - ses snart
Borås Tidning: Almgren målskytt och bäst på plan

Alviks IK - Umeå IK 0-2 (0-0)
Umeå: Johanna Baecklund - Karolina Westberg, Anna Paulsson, Jessica Julin, Elaine (45 Maria Bergqvist) - Kristina Wiklund, Emelie Konradsson, Johanna Andersson - Maria Nordbrandt, Emma Lindqvist, Marta (45 Anna Sjöström)
Goals: 0-1 Anna Sjöström (82), 0-2 Johanna Andersson (86)
Attendance: 1115
Umeå rested several key players (Moström, Östberg, Ljungberg, Mäkinen, Valkonen) and the record crowd at Alvik could almost feel the taste of an upset, going into the last 10 minutes. But in the end they couldn't keep up with Umeå's pace and strength.
Norrländska Socialdemokraten: Emma bemästrade Umeås orkan Marta
Norrländska Socialdemokraten: Minuter från en bragdmatch
Norrbottens-Kuriren: En smärtsam förlust

EDIT July 2:
Just for statistics nerds like me I've tried to get more information on the Stockholm matches, mostly from unofficial sources, but I presume goalscorers and line-ups are fairly correct:

Sätra SK - Hammarby IF 1-4 (1-2)
Hammarby: Camilla Halonen - Maureen Metzger, Josefin Christensen, Annelie Norén, Tanja Meidal (Lindsay Demaree) - Elin Härén, Christina Forsell, Jennie Jonsson, Lisa Arnell (Sofia Hoflin) - Jessica Landström, Salina Olsson (Hanna Olsson)
Goals: 0-1 Jessica Landström, 1-2 Jessica Landström, 1-3 Lisa Arnell, 1-4 Christina Forsell (PK)
As usual in these matches between Damallsvenskan sides and lower division sides (Sätra is a 3rd division side), the match can be pretty even in the first half, but in the long run the better play and fitness of the premier league side decides the game. Maureen Metzger and Lindsay Demaree are two american college players, that I last noticed on a trial for Hammarby early this spring. Since this was an official competition match I presume they are now signed, even if there has been no announcement from Hammarby.

Vasalund/Essinge IF - Djurgården/Älvsjö 0-8
Djurgården: Jill Buchwald - Sara Thunebro, Jenny Curtsdotter, Therese Brogårde, Helen Fagerstöm - Linda Lekander (76 Ingrid Bohlin), Elin Ekblom, Anna Hall - Marijke Callebaut (56 Venus James), Linda Fagerström, Sara Johansson
Goals: Helén Fagerström, Sara Johansson, Linda Fagerström, Venus James (2), Elin Ekblom (3)
Vasalund/Esinge, one of the top sides in the 1st division, decided to field a mostly reserve side and instead focus on their important games in the league where they are one of the sides competing for promotion to the Damallsvenskan. So even if Djurgården/Älvsjö rested their European Championship players, there was a huge difference in quality.

Woman goal-keeper in men's team

When Sunnanå's men's team (playing in the 3rd division) found themselves without an available goalkeeper only hours before match, they turned to Åsa Berglund, keeper with Sunnanå's Damallsvenskan team. "I thought they were joking, but when I realised it was serious I didn't hesitate", says Berglund, "It was a challenge". After the match, where Sunnanå lost 2-1, Berglund commented on her own performance that she had some trouble with high balls as alomst all other players were taller than her, but otherwise thinks she did all right.
SVT: Kvinna med i div III-match för herrar, video clip
Expressen: "Jag trodde de skämtade"
Norra Västerbotten: Åsa kunde inte stoppa Bureå
Västerbottens Folkblad: Åsa vaktade buren i herrderbyt

Örebro's americans will not return

In an interview at Damfotboll.com KIF Örebro's head coach Pia Sundhage reveals that the club's three americans - Kristine Lilly, Kate Markgraf and Mary Frances Monroe - will not return to play. Lilly has a lot of commitment with the national team and her own soccer academy, while Markgraf will go to law school. Monroe wasn't offered a renewal of her contract, as KIF Örebro already has better players. At the present the club don't have any new players to replace the americans, but will move players from the youth team to the 1st team.

Jessica Julin signs with Kopparbergs/Göteborg FC

As expected Jessica Julin has now signed with Kopparbergs/Göteborg. At least QBIK and Själevad also had offers to Julin, but Göteborg was her first choice.
SVT: Umeås Jessica Julin till Göteborg
Värmlands Folkblad: Qbik har fått nobben
Örnsköldsviks Allehanda: Själevad förlorade dragkampen

Hanna Ljungberg on rehab training (again)

Hanna Ljungberg will not participate in Umeå IK's northern tour this week, when the team will play Alvik in the Swedish Cup and also a publicity match against the Sami national team (players from Sweden, Norway and Finland of Sami origin). Hanna has problems with a sore groin and will recieve rehab training with the national team physiotherapist.
Umeå IK

Linköping refuse to release star players for Nordic Cup

Linköping's coach Mikael Bornehav tells the press that he will not release Caroline Seger, Maria Karlsson and Josefine Öqvist (all on Sweden's European Championship squad) to Sweden's team in the upcoming U21 tournament Nordic Cup in July. "I want to do the best for both the girls and for the club", he says.
Corren: LFC-trio stoppas från landslaget

Jessica Julin leaves Umeå IK

Finnich national team midfielder Jessica Julin and Umeå IK has mutually decided to terminate Julin's contract. This means that Julin is free to make a deal with another club without any transfer fee. Julin will leave the club June 30. New club is not decided, but Kopparbergs/Göteborg FC and QBIK are interested. Göteborg is probably Julin's favourite suitor, since her compatriot Heidi Kackur plays there.

Umeå IK will try to find a replacement for Julin, but it will be a young talent, not a seasoned veteran as Julin.
Västerbottens Folkblad: Julin lämnar UIK

Öqvist and Schelin interviews

Both big tabloids featured a long player interview in their weekend editions. Aftonbladet had a chat with Josefine Öqvist and Expressen with Lotta Schelin. A lot of non-football talk - you learn the name of Josefine's hockeyplaying boyfriend and that she thinks that Fredrik Ljungberg isn't that sexy, but has a good fashion sense, while Lotta reveals that she watches "Desperate Housewives" and is good at whistling. Otherwise Josefine is still disappointed in the minutes she got at the European Championships, but it maybe wasn't such a good idea to go complaining to the press. Lotta tells us that she's had big problems keeping away from the training during her vacation and that she is very pleased with Göteborg's coach Martin Pringle, who has a lot of new ideas and a lot of technical training.

Aftonbladet: ”Jag föredrar manligare killar”
Expressen: Nya stjärnan: ”Jag saknar tjejerna”

Big Djurgården/Älvsjö win in regional cup

Djurgården/Älvsjö, fielding a team without European Championship players, defeated lower division side Värmdo IF 11-3 yesterday in the quarterfinals of the regional Victoria Cup. Goals by Anna Hall (4), Marijke Callebaut (2), Sara Johansson (2), Linda Fagerstrom and Elin Ekblom.


Hammarby forward facing 6 month rehab

Hammarby's forward Linda Forsberg, 13 goals last season, will have surgery to fix a problem with a dislocating knee joint. The procedure will be next week and a 6 month rehab period will be needed.


Christie Welsh coming back to Örebro?

US national team forward Christie Welsh, presently with New Jersey Wildcats in the american W-league, will probably return to Örebro. Welsh played in Örebro the last part of the 2004 season and then moved to Olympique Lyonnaise in France this winter. This according to local daily Nerikes Allehanda, that has been talking to KIF Örebro head coach Pia Sundhage. They also reveal that Kristine Lilly, Kate Markgraf and Mary Frances Monroe, that spent the spring with the club, will not return but that Pia is in talks with "an american world class midfielder".

Nerikes Allehanda: KIF Örebro hoppas på comeback av Welsh

Kopparbergs/Göteborg wins friendly at OBIK

Kopparbergs/Göteborg FC defeated QBIK 2-1 in a friendly yesterday. Göteborg showed up without European Championship players Lotta Schelin and Heidi Kackur, both granted leave of absence (Kackur to be married on Friday). QBIK could use their Djurgården/Älvsjö loan Annica Svensson, while Jennifer Meier had to watch from the stands - she's under contract with FSV Frankfurt until June 30.

The match turned out much more even than when QBIK lost 5-0 in the club's Damallsvenskan encounter earlier this season, and QBIK managed to take the lead with an Anna Nilsson goal before Maria Karlsson and Johanna Almgren scored for Göteborg.

Värmlands Folkblad: Bänkad i premiären
Kopparbergs/Göteborg FC
Anders Andersson's blog

For those of you who read swedish, there are two interesting blogs to follow: Anders Andersson (an Umeå IK supporter) at http://anderssonanders.blogg.se/ and Jessica Wiberg (the Malmö FF fan) at http://www.jwiberg.blogg.se/. They've just started, but it seems promising.

Swedish Cup: Unconvincing win for AIK

IFK Viksjö - AIK 0-3 (0-0)
AIK:  Jenny Lundqvist - Lisen Åkerlund, Sara Andersson, Hanna Jöhnk,  Anna-Karin Andersson (46 Maria Moustakakis) - Therese Sandström, Yolanda Odenyo (61 Anna Bergendal), Lina Hedkvist - Elin Hammarman (46 Anna Lundin), Lena Persson, Nazanin Vaseghpanah
Goals: 0-1 Nazanin Vaseghpanah (51), 0-2 Lena Persson (59), 0-3 Lena Persson (75)
Attendance: 489
With less than a week training following the month long break, AIK had big problems getting focused and organized on the field. A 3rd division side like Viksjö shouldn't be able to keep up against AIK, but it took more than half the match before the first goal.

Smith and Rech scores in debut for Sunnanå

Sunnanå's two new players from the Bundesliga, Biancha Rech and Rebecca Smith (match dress pic here), arrived in Sweden the 20th and already the next day they played their first match for the club, a friendly against Själevad. Sunnanå won 4-0 and both Rech and Smith scored. Sunnanå used their full first team except Hanna Marklund, who is resting after the European Championships, and Tiffeny Milbrett, who is in USA until early August. Smith played centre defense and Rech midfield, both the the satisfaction of the coach. Sunnanå's two other goals was scored by forward Madelaine Edlund.
Norra Västerbotten: Bekände färg i debuten
Sunnanå SK

Josefine Öqvist gets promotion deal with make-up company

Almost as a comment to UEFA president Lennart Johansson's widely noticed remarks on how to sponsor women's football, Linköping's start forward Josefine Öqvist has signed a promotion deal with japanese make-up company Kanebo (one of the three biggest in the swedish market). "She is sporty and glamorous. She's a perfect role model", says a representative for the company. Öqvist herself says she loves make-up and already use the brand. No sums are mentioned, but Öqvist's agent says it will be considerable amounts over the next years.
Expressen: "Jossan" blir modell i Japan
Aftonbladet: Nytt modelluppdrag för Josefine Öqvist

Valkonen wants to move to a bigger town

Umeå IK's and Finland's defender Sanna Valkonen confirms to a Umeå newspaper that she most probably will be leaving the club after this season. The football environment in Umeå is great, but after more than three years, she thinks it's time to try something new. "I want to play professional next year too and I don't think I'll return to Finland. But if I'll play in Germany or stay in Sweden, we'll see." She says she would like to live in a bigger city, with more life to it than Umeå.
Västerbottens Folkblad: Valkonens sista säsong

Swedish Cup: QBIK advances

QBIK defeated 2nd division side Västanfors IF 2-1 (0-0) with only three first team players starting; Therese Lückner, Jenny Hallstensson and Rebecca Jonsson. We didn't have any choice but to play the match in the training break, so we just had to pick the players that were available, explains assistant coach Jan Svensson. Both goals by Rebecca Jonsson.

The Damallsvenskan clubs join the swedish cup in the fourth round to play lower division teams.  Most of the 4th round matches will be played the last weekend in June.
Värmlands Folkblad: B-betonat Qbik tog sig vidare i cupen

Victoria Svensson facing 6 week rehab

Victoria Svensson's second half injury in the EC semifinal has been diagnosed as a muscle rupture, that usually takes 3 to 6 weeks rehab to heal. Victoria says that this time she will not hurry through the rehab. She did that with a similar injury in the other leg, coming up to the European Championships with minimal training and very few matches.
Dagens Nyheter: Victoria Svensson kan vara borta i sex veckor

European Championships: Post tournament news and views

The feelings in the team was recognizable - the same numb, empty feeling they've had after a couple of other extra-time defeats (when did a swedish national team last manage to win a match that went on to extra-time??).
Aftonbladet: "Det här gör riktigt ont"
Corren: Gulddrömmen sprack -- Marika i tårar
Dagens Nyheter: Sveriges bästa halvlek räckte inte mot Norge
Dagens Nyheter: Picture show (Flash)
Dagens Nyheter: Hanna Ljungberg: "Tomhet och besvikelse"
Expressen: Marika i tårar efter förlusten

The most common comment from various sports columnists were a relief that the national team managed to finish in an honorable way. The team has been very critisized for their performance in the group matches, but in the semi they showed what they are capable of: "Brilliant football in the first half" is one comment, while Norway's win is called a tactical triumph; they played, in loss for a better word, norwegian - simple, fighting, long balls, fast counters. And, in a reply to some views from norwegian players before the match, another column says: "This team has reached the semifinals in four championships in four years. You don't do that just being lucky."

There seems to be only one point where some are critical, the substitution of Caroline Seger for Frida Östberg at half time. Trying to created something forward exchanged for destructive defense seems to be the general opinion. Personally I can understand the coach's decision - Seger seemed sometimes a liability at midfield, losing the ball from trying to dribble or shortpass instead for taking a more simple approach.

The match is seen as not only Marika Domanski Lyfors farewell, it is also the farewell of the old guard. This in spite of no player (maybe except for Kristin Bengtsson) having said they will retire from the national team, many though have left the question unanswered. Many columnists speculates on what new head coach Thomas Dennerby should do, and maybe mostly how fast he should move in the younger players.
Aftonbladet: De utslagna hjältinnorna
Corren: Utan Seger ingen final
Dagens Nyheter: KRÖNIKAN: Ett bittert slut på en storhetstid
Expressen: Brask: Kurvan pekar neråt - nu får vi se fram mot 2008
Sydsvenskan: En härlig revansch till ingen nytta
Västerbottens Folkblad: Hedern är räddad

New head coach for Djurgården/Älvsjö

Djurgården/Älvsjö has signed Benny Persson as new sport director and head coach and demoted Mikael Söderman to assistant coach. The club claims it is just a reorganisation of the staff since assistant coach Lillie Persson left for the assistant coaching job with the national team. But Djurgården/Älvsjö has not impressed this spring and a lot of people wants to call it a firing of Söderman.
SVT: Dif/Älvsjö sparkar tränaren

QBIK signs Hawkins sisters

QBIK has taken the advise from their coach and reinforced their team during the Euro break. In addition to german Jennifer Meier and Djurgården/Älvsjö's Annica Svensson they have now also signed the twins Sarah and Annie Hawkins. The Hawkins sisters had a trial with the club a short time ago (check here and here if you don't remember), but turned down. Now they have returned and can finance their stay in Sweden themselves. Coach Dave Mosson says they atre not certain starters, but will definitely add depth to the squad.

The club also reveals that they will be looking at yet another, so far unnamed, american player before the season restarts in July.
Värmlands Folkblad: Hawkins på väg vill tillbaka till Qbik

Mallbacken signs american midfielder

Mallbacken has signed with american midfielder Lindsay Greco, college player for UCLA and this spring with (now relegated) Wolfsburg in the german Bundesliga. Mallbacken hopes that Greco, who is called a fast teamplayer that's dangerous in front of the goal, will help them in their attacking game.
Värmlands Folkblad: Målskytten är här

European Championships: Semifinal Norway - Sweden

Norway - Sweden 3-2 et, 2-2 (1-1)
Norway: Bente Nordby - Marianne Paulsen, Marit Fiane Christensen (80 Maritha Kaufmann), Ane Stangeland, Gunhild B Følstad - Solveig Gulbrandsen, Ingvild Stensland, Unni Lehn - Dagny Mellgren, Lise Klaveness, Isabell Herlovsen (65 Stine Fransen)
Sweden: Hedvig Lindahl - Sara Larsson, Hanna Marklund, Jane Törnqvist, Kristine Bengtsson - Anna Sjöström, Malin Moström, Caroline Seger (46 Frida Östberg), Therese Sjögran (71 Josefine Öqvist) - Victoria Svensson (49 Lotta Schelin), Hanna Ljungberg.
Goals: 1-0 Solveig Gulbrandsen (40) , 1-1 Hanna Ljungberg (42), 2-1 Isabell Herlovsen (64), 2-2 Hanna Ljungberg (89), 3-2 Solveig Gulbrandsen (109).
Much better game than in the group play. Sweden showed a lot of the play that has been wanted, dominated most of the first half, nice passing play, ball mostly to the ground, good movement in the offensive half. Norway relied a lot on long balls and really fast counters and their forwards are great to watch. Norway took over in the second half, maybe Svensson's early injury played a part here. Her reborned cooperation with Hanna Ljungberg had resulted in one goal and some dangerous situations in the first half.

Still, I would rather have had them play badly and win than play good and lose.

European Championships: Things that happended while I was away

It was a major family gathering. I turned away from the dinnertable, somewhere between the main course and the dessert, took up my cellphone and wapped to SVT's teletext. My brother looked at me, queringly. "One-nil, Anna Sjöström", I answered. "At what time?" "3rd minute". "Well, thank god we didn't have to sit through that one!", he exclaimed.

I think he probably was on the spot there. From the reports it doesn't seem like it was very enjoyable. The major tabloid had a big headline across the front of the sports section that said "VIDARE!", but with the dot over the I exchanged for five small letters "INGET". Which is pretty clever in swedish: "vidare" means further or through (we won so we're through to the semis) while "inget vidare" means "not very good".

In spite of winning their group, undefeated to that, the swedish team has far from met the expectations. Critizism from media and fans is harsh. Sweden were supposed to dominate against all the other teams in their group, maybe with some exception for Denmark. Instead they have just squeezed by. The lack of goals, the bad passing play, the absence of activity on the wings, the repeated changes of the midfield composition, the constant long and high balls aimed at a striker that is, to quote a TV commentator, two pancakes tall and an almost invisible pair of forwards. Only the defense, and mostly Hanna Marklund, has satisfied the critics so far.

The players and coaches on the other hand willingly admit that the play could have looked better, but they have so far done what they are here to do, resultwise. The swedish tactics, with pressure already in the offensive third of the field, takes a lot of strength. "The defense starts with the forwards" is a common statement from the swedish coaches, and Ljungberg and Svensson has certainly done their bit in that respect. But that takes it's toll and makes the swedish counters slower and less forcefull.

And there is, though not that well represented, a view that this is as good as we are. The field in a competition like the European Championships is strong, there are no push-overs (maybe except for Italy). Be content that the team actually gets the job done and don't complain about how it's done.

I could give you loads of links here, but it I really don't feel like browsing through a weeks worth of 10-15 internet newspapers to find them. Look for yourself if you feel like it.
www.aftonbladet.se, www.expressen.se and www.dn.se covers this event extensively and I  think you'll find news and views at every other swedish site I've ever linked to here.

Finland's women on the other hand were completely exhilarated after their 2-1 win over Denmark. The biggest thing ever in finnish football, men or women, was among the most modest statements. There was a fantastic audio clip on finnish radio, an interview with Jessica Julin and Heidi Kackur (they are both from the swedishspeaking minority) directly after the match. They seem to have pulled it now, maybe too much swearing in it?? Julin and Kackur were on top of the world and needed to emphazise every feeling with a well chosen swearword. It was probably also from another post match interview, with a happy but somewhat more relaxed team captain Sanna Valkonen, that the rumour that the finnish girls would celebrate by skinnydipping in the hotel fountain emanated.
No link, since they pulled my favourite clip.

The young ones against the old guard is a popular theme. Seger, Öqvist and Schelin are fun, vocal and self-confident. So far none of them has really impressed on the field, but who has. But in one event they have taken the lead. The swedish national team players, especially those from Umeå, has a reputation of being shopaholics. But Seger, Öqvist and Schelin has taken over at least there.
TV4 (Shopping clip)
Expressen: En blågul modeoffensiv

Bad play or not, the European Championship is the big thing in sports in Sweden these weeks. The Finland match was played and televised opposite the men's friendly against Norway. The women's match got an audience of 1,2 millions while the men's game, shown at another network, got half as much. None of the big names (Ljungberg, Ibrahimovic) played for Sweden, but nonetheless.
Dagens Nyheter: Damlandslaget vann tittarmatchen

Matches with 25 to 30 thousand in the crowds are not commonplace with european women's football and I think England's matches got bigger TV audience than the FA Cup final. But what concerns the tournament itself there are still ways to go. Representatives for the swedish FA says there is a lot left to do:
- the squads are to small, 17 outfield players compared to 220 in the men's tournament
- all competing teams are put in the same hotel - unthinkable in a men's tournament
- they are not alone at the hotels, they have to share it with tourists and wedding parties
Dagens Nyheter: Damfotboll släpar efter herrarna

European Championships: Sweden - Finland

Sweden - Finland 0-0 (0-0)
Sweden: Hedvig Lindahl - Kristin Bengtsson, Jane Törnqvist, Hanna Marklund, Sara Larsson - Therese Sjögran (71 Anna Sjöström), Malin Andersson, Malin Moström, Lotta Schelin (56 Josefine Öqvist) - Hanna Ljungberg, Victoria Svensson
Finland: Satu Kunnas - Eveliina Sarapää, Sanna Valkonen, Tiina Salmén, Petra Vaelma - Minna Mustonen (71 Sanna Talonen), Anne Mäkinen, Jessica Julin, Anna-Kaisa Rantanen (90 Sanna Malaska) - Laura Kalmari, Heidi Kackur (46 Jessica Thorn)

No time to comment on this, but God, was it frustrating!

I'll be away for about week again, so no updates for a while. In case anyone would be wondering.

Three top players to leave Umeå IK?

Sanna Valkonen, Umeå IK's 27 year old finnish national team defender, tells finnish daily Vasabladet that she will not renew her contract with Umeå when it expires in november. Valkonen, who is on her 4th season with the club and is one of their most valuable players, says it is time to try something else. Not completely clear if she plans to continue with football elsewhere or if she intends to concentrate on her business studies.
Vasabladet: EM tände en ny gnista

Midfielder Jessica Julin, also on the finnish national team, has had problems getting a spot om Umeå's team after the club signed Finland's 2004 Player of the Year Anne Mäkinen and brasilian international Elaine. She tells her hometown paper Jakobstads Tidning that she has already decided she will not play for the club 2006, but might leave, possibly on loan, already this summer.
Jakobstads Tidning: Nu väntar det stora äventyret  

Sweden's national team defender Karolina Westberg left Malmö FF for Umeå IK this winter, but have since lost her starting position with both club and country. She tells Malmö local daily Sydsvenskan that she will return to Malmö FF, but avoids questions on when that will happen. The newspaper's guess is that it will be already this summer.
No link, since this only appeared in the printed edition.

European Championships: Player interviews

A lot of articles that is not directly connected to the games in England are found in the papers. Malmö's local paper Sydsvenskan talks to former Malmö FF player Heidi Kackur on why she left Malmö: "Last season was no good. I didn't get along with the coach, we didn't communicate and I didn't get any confidence from him. I had to leave." Getting a full time pro contract with Kopparbergs/Göteborg didn't hurt, though. She also says that the increased number of players playing abroad, particulary in Sweden, is to thank for the improved quality of Finland's national team the last years, culminating in the first ever finnish (men or women) championship finals. "But the swedish players keep taunting us (all group A teams are staying at the same hotel), saying we're just here to learn and will return home after a week."
Sydsvenskan: Flytten från MFF lyfte Kackur

Victoria Svensson talks about big problems handling the intense attention to her person after the 2003 World Cup. "I said yes to almost every proposal from the media and almost burned out". She now has a mental who helps her deal with the pressure of getting football, media and personal life working together. "I am more in control now".
Svenska Dagbladet: VM-succén höll på att knäcka Victoria
Göteborgsposten: Victoria tillbaka på allvar

European Championships: Sweden - Finland pre game

Not only is Finland a side that Sweden is used to meet, half the finnish line-up plays in Damallsvenskan. In Umeå IK alone there are three. "It will be really fun to play them, since we know them so well", says Hanna Marklund. Defender Sara Larsson is not worried: "We've started tournaments much worse than this and still managed to do well" and believes Sweden will defeat both Finland and England.

Richard Holmlund, former Umeå IK coach, is responsible for scouting Finland. "We should win 7 or 8 matches out of 10, but we have to watch out for their central line Valkonen - Mäkinen - Kalmari". Playing fast and wide, keeping the ball on the ground and an agressive preassure seems to be the solution for Sweden, according to Ljungberg, Moström and Törnqvist. And it is 29 years since Finland last defeated Sweden.

There is, unlike the game against Denmark, a certain amount of trash talk, most probably because so many of the players in the opposing teams know each other. So you can find a bit of talk about who's gonna eat who alive, and who's gonna shut whose mouth.

"Losing to Finland isn't even on the map", says Linköping youngsters Josefine Öqvist and Caroline Seger, but continues "God, it would be embarrasing if we lost. We can't go back home if we do."

Västerbottens Folkblad: I dag är vännerna fiender
Värmlands Folkblad: Larsson säker på seger mot Finland
TV4: Victoria Svensson interview and Tina Nordlund analysis (video clip)
SVT: Sverige måste vinna mot Finland, interview with Finlands coach (clip), talks with finnish players in Sweden (clip)
Svenska Dagbladet: Svensk koll ska hindra finsk pinne
Expressen: Så ska Sverige stoppa Finlands stjärnor
Expressen: ”Ska täppa till käften på dem”
Dagens Nyheter: Hanna leder de svenska försvaret
Dagens Nyheter: Kalmari: "Vi har en stor chans att vinna"
Dagens Nyheter: 29 år sedan Finland vann sist
Corren: Rantanen tror på seger mot Sverige i kväll
Corren: Fotbollstjejerna tillbaka i verkligheten
Aftonbladet: ”Jag vågar inte komma hem...”
Aftonbladet: Jossan perfekt mot Finland - enligt henne själv
Aftonbladet: Bank: Spela svenskt - då blir det seger mot Finland

European Championships: 75,000 bonus for swedish gold

The national team's player council (Hanna Ljungberg, Malin Moström, Caroline Jönsson and Malin Andersson) and the swedish FA has finished negotiations concerning player compensation for the European Championship. Both sides says they are satisfied, even if no one can comment on figures. The FA says this is the best deal ever for a swedish women's national team. Tabloid Expressen estimates the bonus for a gold to be approximately SEK 75,000.

Expressen: Nu får dom sin drömbonus

European Championships: Post and pre game talk

Disappointment, not with the result but with their own play, was the predominant feeling in the swedish camp after the Denmark game. The first 30 minutes worked well, but then they lost confidence in the midfield and began to resort to long balls. A couple of the few players that got passing grades in the press was goalkeeper Hedvig Lindahl in her championship debut and defender Hanna Marklund. A major post game subject was the referee's decision when Therese Sjögran was brought down Denmark's keeper. Hanna Ljungberg was convinced it should have been a penalty while head coach Domanski Lyfors commented that things like this happened and usually evened out over a tournament.
Västerbottens Folkblad: Premiär i moll – som vanligt
Sydsvenskan: 1–1 mellan Sverige och Danmark 
SVT: Short Caroline Jönsson interview (RealVideo)
Göteborgsposten: Än tror Moström på EM-guld
Expressen: Sverige rasar mot domaren
Dagens Nyheter: Vickan: "Vi vet att vi kan bättre än vi visade"

Young midfielder Caroline Seger could have wished for a better championship debut; picked off the field after being more or less invisible for 55 minutes. She was definitely not satisfied with her own performance and thinks her substitution was justified. Her more experienced team mates urged her not to read the papers after the match. "It's nice to read when there is something positive, but I can tell myself when I'm bad", Seger commented.
Aftonbladet: Undviker läsa tidningar
Sydsvenskan: Besviken Seger undvek tidningarna
Expressen: "Det var en chock"
Dagens Nyheter: En debut som Seger sent ska glömma
Corren: Dagen efter -- en dag av eftertanke för Seger

Finland's midfielder Jessica Julin said she was not sad after their extratime defeat to England, she was mad and angry. Finland didn't start good, they were much to nervous in their first ever championship match and made easy mistakes, but did great to come back from being 2 goals down and deserved the draw. No one in the finish team thinks it will be hard to focus on the next game though. "You just have to say Sweden and we're all set". The fact that six finnish players have club mates in the swedish team will of course help.
Corren: Rantanens mål var förgäves
Vasabladet: Julin arg och förbannad
Vasabladet: Kalmari trodde sig fixat poäng
Vasabladet: Tränaren: Det känns grymt
Expressen: Psykkriget: ”Vi ska äta upp dom”
Hufvudstadsbladet: Kampen på mittfältet avgör Finlands öde

Marta highest paid Damallsvenskan player

Umeå IK's brasilian star Marta is Damallsvenskan's highest paid player with, according to media sources, a SEK 50,000 a month net income. Umeå's management denies press information that Marta makes SEK 100,000 a month before taxes, but confirms that she got a raise from last year and has "a very reasonable salary". They refuse to give any figures.

There are approximately 20 full time professionals in Damallsvenskan this season, 11 of the in Umeå. Tabloid Expressen publishes possible wage figures for the national team members, but those are based on the tax returns for 2003. Back then Hanna Ljungberg was the full time professional in Sweden and paid taxes based on a SEK 326,000 income. The other 2003 top earners, Malin Moström and Malin Andersson, both had fairly well paid part-time day jobs.

Västerbottens Folkblad: Arnqvist: Marta tjänar inte 100 000 i månaden
Expressen: Så här mycket tjänar tjejerna

Malmö FF coach to leave the club

Malmö FF's coach Anders Johansson will leave the club when his current contract expires after this season. Johansson, who has been with Malmö for three years, says it has been his best years with football, but that he wants to move back to Stockholm, where his home and family is.

Malmö FF

European Championships: Rantanen and Kalmari scores in losing effort

Anna-Kaisa Rantanen and Laura Kalmari scored for Finland, but nonetheless lost 2-3 to England in their first group match. All Finland's six Damallsvenskan players (Anne Mäkinen, Jessica Julin and Sanna Valkonen in Umeå, Anna-Kaisa Rantanen in Linköping, Heidi Kackur in Kopparbergs/Göteborg and Laura Kalmari in Djurgården/Älvsjö) started with Heidi Kackur substituted in the 81st minute.

England took a 2-0 lead in the first half with rather few opportunities for Finland. Not until after England's Kelly Smith left the pitch at halftime Finland managed to get a hold of the match and dominated large parts of the second half, resulting in Rantanen's long shot from outside the area and Kalmari's header in the last minute of regulation time. Finland's heavy attacking opened for english counters with Aluko, waiting on the offside mark, managing to get one-on-one with the finnish keeper Kunnas at least three times. Some brilliant goalkeeping from Kunnas kept Finland in the match until Carney scored on a rebound in extratime.

Jessica Julin and Mikko Käld post game interviews (Real Audio)

European Championships: Sweden - Denmark

Sweden - Denmark 1 - 1 (1-1)
Sweden: Hedvig Lindahl - Sara Larsson, Jane Törnqvist, Hanna Marklund, Kristin Bengtsson - Lotta Schelin (84 Josefine Öqvist), Frida Östberg, Malin Moström, Caroline Seger (55 Therese Sjögran) - Victoria Svensson, Hanna Ljungberg.
Goals: 1-0 Hanna Ljungberg (20), 1-1 Johanna Rasmussen (28)
The first game curse continues - Sweden haven't managed to win their opener in a major tournament since 1997. But at least it wasn't a defeat this time. The key to the match was winning the midfield, which made Domanski Lyfors return to the traditional midfield diamond with Frida Östberg in the defensive position. Sweden started well, agressive play, starting their counters high up on the danish half and creating several good scoring opportunities. But by the end of the first half Denmark began winning the midfield battle and were dangerous coming down the wings. Sweden did a couple of player moves and a substitution trying to better the midfield play, but it only worked partly. The second half as a whole belonged to Denmark with a faster and better passing play. Even if the danish players were all smiles after the match and the swedish rather disappointed, Sweden should be the ones most satisfied with the result.

SVT - Star wars inspired clip on the build up for the Denmark clash (Windows media)    
Post game:
Aftonbladet: Oavgjord EM-premiär
Expressen: Dålig start i EM-premiären
Dagens Nyheter: Sverige kryssade i EM-premiären
SVT: Oavgjort för damerna i EM-premiär

If you want to get your match reports and other stuff in english I recommend UEFA's official site, BBC and Georgina Turner's blog at the Guardian.

Damallsvenskan MVP's for the first quarter season named

The women's football magazine Nya Mål (the same people that runs the website Damfotboll.com), Damallsvenskan's main sponsor Svenska Spel and EFD, the association of women's elite football clubs, awards a trophy for "the most extraordinary and valuable performance" by a Damallsvenskan player every year. They have released the standings after the first 6 rounds:

1. Kristine Lilly, KIF Örebro
2. Therese Sjögran, Malmö FF
3. Salina Olsson, Hammarby IF
4. Hanna Marklund, Sunnanå SK
5. Malin Moström, Umeå IK

The final winner will be named at the end of the season.


Lilie Persson to be national team assistant coach

Lilie Persson, presently assistant coach with Djurgården/Älvsjö, has been named Thomas Dennerby's successor as assistant to the national team coach. Persson, who has been coaching AIK's women, has 16 seasons as a player in Damallsvenskan and, just as Dennerby, spent most of her player career in Hammarby.


Djurgården player to QBIK

Annica Svensson, midfielder and two times swedish champion with Djurgården-Älvsjö, will probably spend the last part of the season with QBIK. Svensson, who has been having difficulties getting playing time in Djurgården's first team, had QBIK's head coach Dave Mosson as her coach in highschool. There are some details left to solve between the teams, but the transfer seems pretty much set.

Värmlands Folkblad: Djurgårdens landslagstjej väljer Qbik 

Three Damallsvenskan players on USA roster for Canada game

Tiffeny Milbrett, Sunnanå, as well as Kate Margraf and Kristine Lilly, KIF Örebro, has been called up for training camp and a friendly against Canada with the US national team late June.


Promising rehearsal against Canada

Sweden - Canada 3-1 (2-0)
Sweden: Hedvig Lindahl - Sara Larsson, Hanna Marklund, Jane Törnqvist, Kristin Bengtsson - Anna Sjöström (58 Frida Östberg), Malin Moström, Caroline Seger (71 Malin Andersson), Lotta Schelin - Victoria Svensson, Hanna Ljungberg (69 Maria Karlsson)
Goals: 1-0 Hanna Ljungberg (13), 2-0 Victoria Svensson (17), 3-0 Malin Moström (63), 3-1 Christine Sinclair (70).
Attendance: 2,503
A convincing performance from the swedish side in their last match before the European Championships. Canada, that defeated Denmark 4-3 only a few days earlier, was never any real threat. Particulary nice to see the cooperation between Hanna Ljungberg and Victoria Svensson working good. Marika Domanski Lyfors also fielded a straight midfield without a defensive mid. Having Malin Moström and Carolina Seger, players that are both happy to push forward, in the centre mid turned out good and a very reliable back line took care of what flaws there might have been in the defensive play. Jane Törnqvist probably worked her way back to a starting position after a less than convincing last 6 months. Josefine Öqvist and Therese Sjögran both rested because of minor injuries.

Svensk Fotboll
SVT: Svensson och Ljungberg bröt måltorkan , Match clip, windows media
TV4: Match clip    
Dagens Nyheter: "Det här såg lovande ut"
Dagens Nyheter: Bra besked för kaptenen