DAVID SMITH - Friday, May 7, 2010
Benny Feilhaber and Aarhus will fight to save their season on their visit to Michael Parkhurst's Nordsjælland while Jamil Fearrington and Roskilde will look to pull off another huge upset.
FC Nordsjælland - AGF Aarhus
Benny Feilhaber and Aarhus likely need a win on their trip to Nordsjælland on Sunday to maintain any chance of survival, and will hope that the minds of Michael Parkhurst and his teammates are distracted by their upcoming Danish Cup final date.
Aarhus' home loss to SønderjyskE on Thursday put them into the unenviable position of having their security in the Danish top flight entirely out of their control.
As they are two points behind Randers and three back from SønderjyskE with a slightly inferior goal differential to both, not only do they need to win one, if not both of their games, but also hope for a slip-up on the part of one of the other two.
As both of their competitors at the bottom are facing top-three teams this weekend, Aarhus' date with the Wild Tigers, who are in seventh, coming off a loss and likely resting up before their Danish Cup final on Thursday, might be their last hope before next week's finale against league runners-up Odense.
For their part, Nordsjælland saw their remarkable run of eight straight in league and cup without a loss come to an end thanks to their 2-1 loss in Odense in the midweek.
With little other than pride left to play for in the league and the all-important Danish Cup date with Midtjylland awaiting four days later, head coach Morten Wieghorst could choose to rest up some of his more important stars, potentially paving the way for an Aarhus miracle.
Wieghorst was happy to see midfielder Nicolai Stockholm unexpectedly fit for Thursday's game after a knee injury scare in the previous game, however is still waiting for attacking midfielder Sibusiso Zuma to gain full fitness. Backup keeper Nenad Novakovic is also out while recovering from a shoulder problem.
The health of Canadian international Patrice Bernier is also questionable after he was stretchered off the field in Thursday's loss after 30 minutes.
Aarhus coach Erik Rassmussen will likely continue to be without injured support striker Davit Devdriani, as well as Kim Madsen and Ulrik Lindkvist, all of whom have missed the last few games with their respective injury struggles.
Viborg FF - FC Vestsjælland
Babajide Ogunbiyi and Viborg's hopes for promotion have practically vanished thanks to their current five-game winless streak, but they will hope to play the spoiler role on Saturday when fifth-place Vestsjælland come to town with their own fight to reach the Superliga barely hanging by a thread.
While a dogfight amongst the teams below them has left Viborg safe in sixth in spite of their recent troubles, this run has likely cost them any shot they had of reaching the top-two as they are now a full twelve points back with only seven games left.
Last week's 2-0 shut-out loss to 13th-place Skive was typical of their troubles on the attacking end during the spring, where they have scored only six goals through their eight games since the re-start, with a heavy dependence on set pieces.
Vestsjælland could provide the chance for them to break out of their slump, as the league's current fifth-place team has also fallen on hard times as of late, going six without taking full points, and in the process stretching their promotion chances to the point of breaking.
Viborg will likely continue to be without forwards Christian Muomaife and Christian Olsen, both of whom continue to struggle with injury, and saw Kevin Mensah return to the injury table just 45 minutes back from a lengthy absence after straining his thigh.
Vestsjælland will have a full squad available for the game.
Lyngby BK - Roskilde BK
Jamil Fearrington and Roskilde will do their best to carry their momentum to nearby rivals Lyngby on Sunday, looking to pull off an upset over the second-place team several weeks after already knocking off the league leaders.
Roskilde continued their strong spring campaign with a win over Frem last weekend to stay seven points clear of the drop zone, but will have a far more difficult task when they visit promotion-hunting Lynbgy.
Fearrington and his teammates have indeed made a habit this season of surprising the division's top teams on the road, upsetting league leaders Horsens several weeks before and third-place Fredericia earlier in the fall.
Roskilde continue to be without long-term absences Morten Avnskjold, who suffered catastrophic leg injury during last summer's pre-season preparations and forward Tobias Perch-Nielsen, who recently underwent surgery on his meniscus. Midfielder Stefan Schmidt also continues to struggle with a knee injury.
In addition, Toke Morsing will also miss the game due to a lengthy red card suspension.
Lyngby will most likely continue to be without defenders Morten Petersen and Jacob Bresemann, who are both injured.
Both Chris Rolfe and Marcus Tracy are injured, meaning neither will suit up for Aalborg's trip to Brøndby on Sunday, as they fight for qualification to the Europa League.
Euan Holden is injured and will sit out Vejle's game at home on Sunday against last-place Brabrand IF.