DAVID SMITH - Friday, August 12, 2011
The second round of the 2011-12 Danish Cup was drawn on Friday afternoon, giving Chris Rolfe and Aalborg a tough local derby against Viborg and Nordsjaelland an easy start to their quest for a third straight trophy.
With the first round of games amongst lower division teams completed during the week, the bottom eight teams in the Superliga enter the fray for late-August's second round.
Four of the five Americans playing in Denmark's top division learned their fates, with Clarence Goodson being the lone Yank whose team, Brøndby, received a bye to the third round.
Perhaps the most attractive matchup of this stage of the competition involves two teams both featuring Americans, as Aalborg BK must pay a visit to local 1. Division rivals Viborg FF in a rematch of last year's round of 16 game.
However, with Viborg's Babajide Ogunbiyi expected to possibly miss the entire fall with knee problems and Marcus Tracy still on the road to recovery for the visitors, the lone American likely to play in this game will be Aalborg's Chris Rolfe.
Viborg are the more recent of the two teams to hoist the trophy, having won it all in 2000. Aalborg are also not without their own success in the competition with two wins, however their last came in 1970.
Viborg beat fellow 1. Division team Skive IK in the first round by a 5-3 margin on penalties, and will be looking for some revenge for last year's penalty shootout defeat to Aalborg in the final 16 of the competition.
Michael Parkhurst and Nordsjaelland will begin their quest for a third straight title with a trip to lower division minnows Hillerød Fodbold, who play several divisions down in Denmarks Serie 2.
Brad Rusin and Køge have had yet to notch a win in Superliga play, however should expect to come out winners when they visit 2. Division team Hellerup IK.
Køge also reached the final 16 of last season's edition before getting blown out at home by eventual finalists Midtjylland, and would be utterly shocked should they fail to beat the Copenhagen-area team playing two divisions below them.
Rounding out the first round of the competition for Americans is a trip for Conor O'Brien and SønderjyskE to 2. Division team Brabrand IF.
Both teams were beaten at this stage of the Cup last season, however SønderjyskE will come into the game as heavy favorites.
All games in this round are set to be played in midweek from August 23-25.
Danish Cup second round draw
Viborg FF - Aalborg BK
Brabrand IF - SønderjyskE
Hellerup IK - HB Køge
Hillerød Fodbold - FC Nordsjælland