DAVID SMITH - Friday, November 19, 2010
Michael Parkhurst and Nordsjaelland will try to hold off league leaders Copenhagen while Benny Feilhaber and Aarhus look to continue their dominance at the top of the First Division.
FC Copenhagen - FC Nordsjaelland
Michael Parkhurst and the Wild Tigers face a major uphill battle if they hope to win their second straight when they visit local rivals and still-undefeated league leaders Copenhagen on Sunday.
Nordsjaelland finally broke their lengthening winless streak in Superligaen play, holding off Lyngby at home to put some distance between themselves and the relegation zone.
Their task will be considerably more difficult on Sunday, as they are visiting the ever-daunting Copenhagen, who have stormed to the front of the league, and are still undefeated with half of the season gone by.
Nordsjaelland's local neighbors won the upper hand in the first meeting of these two teams with a solid 2-0 win in mid-August, and are roaring ahead on all fronts, sporing a 16-point cushion atop the standings and looking like solid favorites to advance to the knockout round of the Champions League.
Neither team is reporting any injuries or suspensions for the game.
Brønshøj BK - AGF Aarhus
After netting the winning penalty in last week's dramatic last-minute win over Viborg, Benny Feilhaber and Aarhus hit the road on Sunday and will look to widen their gap atop the First Division when they take on Brønshøj BK.
Aarhus scored a somewhat controversial victory against Viborg one week before, with Feilhaber netting the decisive spot kick in injury time after a dubious call in the box the the referee.
The three points maintained Aarhus' eight-point gap ahead nearest challengers Vejle, and they will hope to extend their 15-game unbeaten run against a Brønshøj team which has exceeded expectations for the entire season.
Having just been promoted from the Second Division, they are sitting an impressive fifth place in the league, and are in the midst of a four-game winning streak, which could test the mettle of Feilhaber and his compatriots.
Aarhus will be missing defender Jens Gjesing for the long haul as he recovers from an ACL tear while Brønshøj are reporting no injuries or suspensions.
FC Vestsjælland - Viborg FF
Babajide Ogunbiyi and Viborg will try to shake off last weekend's controversial loss against Aarhus and pick up a valuable three points when they visit Vestsjælland on Sunday.
Viborg felt hard done by the referee in last week's loss to Aarhus, seeing a well-deserved point against the league leaders slip away thanks to a questionable last-second penalty call by the referee.
The loss was just the latest in what has been a sub-par fall term, as their hopes for promotion have morphed into a struggle against possible relegation.
They will hope to close out the fall on a high note and pick up what would be just their fifth win in 16 tries on their trip to sixth-place Vestsjælland on Sunday.
Their hosts have been struggling in recent weeks, having gone five without a win, including three rather lopsided losses.
Both teams are reporting full squads for the game.
Chris Rolfe and Marcus Tracy are both injured through the end of the calendar year and will miss Aalborg's home clash on Sunday against Brøndby IF.
Jamel Johnson will likely not participate on Saturday when Fyn visit Vejle.