DAVID SMITH - Monday, July 16, 2012
Conor O'Brien was on the scoresheet in SønderjyskE's destructive season-opening win over Randers while Clarence Goodson and Brøndby had a weak start in their home loss to Odense.
SønderjyskE 6 - 1 Randers FC
Conor O'Brien's early second-half goal put the game out of reach on Saturday, as SønderjyskE had a smashing start to the season in a six-goal performance at home against Randers.
Charlie Davies, who had joined Randers the week before, was on the team's bench but was not called into action.
The hosts needed little time to remind newly-promoted Randers of the tough rigors awaiting in the Danish top flight, with Thomas Hansen's rocket of a header in the 12th minute putting them ahead, then Henrik Hansen completing a swift attack with an easy finish from the left side of the six-yard box six minutes later for the two-goal lead.
Randers continued to appear taken by complete surprise, and saw their deficit increase to three in the 33rd minute. Quincy Antipas ran onto a through ball from Hansen on the right side, evaded keeper David Ousted as he dove for the ball, and put his tight-angled shot perfectly on-frame for the 3-0.
Just moments after the break, Randers did appear to give themselves a lifeline when Jonas Kamper charged forward from the midfield and without warning, launched a looping 30-plus yard towards goal, which flew just over the reach of SønderjyskE keeper Hakon Opdal to cut the lead to two.
Their brief moments of hope ended largely of their own accord, however, when O'Brien took a crack from distance in the 50th minute, and while the ball was in position for Ousted to make a save, the keeper was inexplicably caught on the wrong foot, letting the ball pass for the 4-1 lead.
From that point, Randers had little but the final whistle to play for, and were forced to endure some further humiliation as Lasse Vibe added the hosts' fifth after being fed into the box by Hansen two minutes past the hour, then with 18 minutes left, Jarl Andre Storbaek brought the score to 6-1 from the spot after Antipas was cut down in the box.
SønderjyskE will hope to continue their perfect start on Sunday when they host FC Copenhagen, while Davies will look for his debut with Randers when they visit Odense.
Brøndby IF 0 - 1 Odense BK
Clarence Goodson played the full 90 minutes in Brøndby's central defense on Sunday afternoon, but the team was unable to start the season on a winning note as they fell to Odense on an early goal.
A fast-paced game saw Odense come close to opening the score in the ninth when Michael Tørnes was forced into a diving save, but were able to stamp their mark on the proceedings eight minutes later.
Rasmus Falk received the ball just inside the top of the area, managed to beat Nicolai Agger into space before sliding the ball over to Jacub Schoop, who managed to put the ball on-target with an off-balanced shot to give his team the lead.
Goodson was close to heading in an equalizer just before the hour mark, then minutes later Simon Makienok's shot was barely kept out by Odense keeper Jesper Christiansen.
Then with 13 minutes later, Goodson looked to have struck gold with a header that did find the back of the net, however it was called back for an offensive foul in the box, and Odense managed to hold on over the final minutes to secure the road win.
Brøndby will be back in action on Sunday when they pay a visit to Aalborg BK.
Michael Parkhurst is recovering from a broken toe and was not included in Nordsjaelland's squad for their season-opening game on Monday evening at AC Horsens.