BRENDAN WIMBERLY - Friday, May 25, 2012
Cobi Spans first start generated a significant amount of buzz in Sweden while veteran Ryan Miller chipped in another fine performance for Halmstad.
Helsingsborg IF 1 - 1 Djurgarden IF
After impressing in his 25 minute debut against Hacken last week, Cobi Span made his first start for Djurgarden this week.
Helsingsborg got off to a good start in the first minute when Daniel Nordmark scored off of a gaffe by Djurgarden Keeper Tommy Vaiho. Nordmark played in a set piece from 40 meters but the ball didnt reach any of its intended targets. The ball bounced directly in front of Vaiho, but the Djurgarden Keeper was caught off guard and the ball deflected off his left arm into the net.
Vaiho attoned for himself, making several brilliant saves afterwards, most notable robbing Nordmark off a second goal. Nordmark played a ball to an offside teammate who wisely passed on making an attempt for the ball, allowing Nordmark to catch up with his own pass. Vaiho came off his line and smothered Nordmark attempt to lob over him.
Djurgarden pulled even in the 74th minute. Peter Nymann rushed towards the endline just inside the right side of the Helsingsborg box and floated a cross to a waiting Span, who sent a beautiful header into the top left corner from 8 meters out to give the American his first ever professional goal. The American was substituted out in the 80th minute for Sebastian Rajalasko.
Span has drawn praise for both of his appearances in Djurgardens last two matches and should be in line to start when they host Goteborg next week while Helsinsborg take on Gefle at home.
Halmstad BK 2 - 0 IF Brommapojkarna
Ryan Miller once again started and went 90 minutes for Halmstad as they beat a strong Brommapojkarna side.
Gudjon Baldvinsson put Halmstad up in the 41st minute. Baldvinsson took a penalty kick and attempted to send it into the middle of the net, but Brommapojkarna Keeper Niklas Westberg did nicely to stop it with his feet as he lunged to his left. The rebound bounced high directly in front of the net however, and Baldvinsson was able to head home uncontested.
In the 76th minute, Miller rushed down the right flank and received a pass from Kristinn Steindorsson. Miller played in a low ball to Mikael Boman, who controlled the ball nicely with his back to the net before he turned and sent a shot past Westberg into the lower left corner off the net from ten meters out.
Halmstad grabbed a deserved three points, as they dominated the run of play for most of the match. The win saw Halmstad jump both Brommapojkarna and Hammarby, as they rise from fourth to second the Superettan.
Halmstad are out of action until they travel to take on Brage next week while Brommapojkarna host Umea.