PREVIEW: MIDWEEK NORWEGIAN ACTION
The second round of the Norwegian Cup kicks off on Wednesday with an intriguing match-up between dual citizens as Mikkel Diskerud and Erik Benjaminsen's Stabaek visit 2. Division neighbors Sebastian Troupe and Baerum.
Baerum - Stabaek
Norwegian-Americans Mikkel Diskerud and Erik Benjaminsen of Stabaek will meet up with fellow dual citizen Sebastian Troupe and Baerum Wednesday in the second round of the Norwegian Cup.
Troupe's Baerum of the 2. Division will host the Eliteserien team at Sandvika Stadion, just ten minutes away from Stabaek's home of Telenor Arena, the same venue where Baerum defeated Våleregna and Strømsgodset in 2004 and 2009 respectively.
The visitors will arrive at Sandvika Stadion following two consecutive Eliteserien wins and a 12-1 victory over 3. Division Høland in the first round of the Cup.
Diskerud, who scored two in Wednesday's win, will likely start at center midfield, while Benjaminsen hopes to again contribute to the back line off the bench.
Baerum sits at sixth in the 2. Division standings and will count on Troupe up front to spearhead the team's attack.
The hosts earned their right to face off with the 2008 Eliteserien champs after a 2-1 away win against 2. Division team Pors.
Mandalskameratene - Start
Hunter Freeman will travel with Start to the southern tip of Norway where they will meet 2. Division team Mendalskameratene in the second round of the Norwegian Cup.
The native Texan is likely to start at his customary spot of right back like he did in last week's first round victory over Jerv.
Fellow American and back line mate Clarence Goodson is at World Cup training camp in Princeton, New Jersey with the US national team and will not return to the Kristiansand club until July.
After a much needed Eliteserien victory over Konsvinger Sunday, that followed three consecutive losses, Knut Torum's squad hopes to return to their early season, high scoring form.
The hosts earned their right to advance to the second round of the cup after a 1-0 win over fellow 2. Division squad Vindbjart.
Valdres FK - Honefoss
Honefoss yanks, Kenneth Di Vita Jensen and Steve Clark, head to the 2. Division home of Valdres FK in Fagernes, Norway.
Di Vita Jensen is likely to make his second start for Hønefoss and play a full 90 minutes after doing so in a first round 7-0 victory over Jevnaker.
Clark will return to the starting line up following a month of rehab on an injured quad.
The Eliteserien visitors will arrive in Fargernes after a 0-3 defeat to powerhouse Rosenborg this past Sunday.
Valdres is expecting a record breaking 1,000 spectators to witness the second round play which they earned after defeating fellow 2. Divsion team Voss, 4-1 last Wednesday.
Asker - Sarpsborg
Goalkeeper Colin Burns looks set to start in net for 1. Division Sarpsborg who travel to Asker on Wednesday.
Burns has spent the bulk of the season on the bench as the reserve goalkeeper but did get his first start in last week's first round Cup win over Drøbak/Frogn.
The task will become a bit more difficult Føyka Stadion against Asker who are having a solid season in Norway's 2. Division.
The hosts are currently in third place with ten points and are riding a wave of momentum after narrowly defeating Sprint-Jeloy in their first round Cup contest last week.
Sarpsborg are still sadlled with a myriad of injuries as Oyvind Hoas, Michael Ron, Stian Andersrod, Martin Mathisen, Berat Jusufi, Ole Hansen and Heier Joakim Eyde all look doubtful to play.
Asker are reporting no major injuries.
Førde - Sogndal
Former Clemson University standout Joseph Bednik will start his second consecutive Cup match as 1. Division Sogndal travel to Førde Stadion to take on Førde.
Bednik's first professional win came in the form of a 0-4 shutout over lower division Ardal.
Waiting in the wings this week is 2. Division Førde who sit in eighth place in Group One of Norway's third level of proffesional soccer.
Sogndal will likely field a squad full of younger players including rising star Gustav Valsvik who netted his first ever goal against Ardal.
Neither team is reporting major injuries so both coaches can expect to have full squads at their disposal.
Tyrel Lacey is still out with a knee injury and will not take part in Lyn's Cup clash with Fana.