PREVIEW: WEEKEND NORWEGIAN ACTION
The second half of the 2010 Eliteserien season begins Saturday with Start traveling to Sandefjord as Stabæk hosts Viking.
Sandefjord - Start
Hunter Freeman and Clarence Goodson look to secure an easy and much needed win this Saturday against the Eliteserien's last placed team Sandefjord.
Suspended from last weekend's league play due to an accumulation of yellow cards, Freeman will once again join Goodson in the defense back-four.
A win is vital for Knut Tørum's team who have only secured two thus far and continue to slip through the cracks of the Eliteserien rankings. Despite their place in the league, however, Start remain as one of the highest scoring teams with 27 goals.
Start also boasts striker Ole Martin Årst but will not be able to employ his high scoring abilities due to injury. They will instead rely on Christer Kleiven and Mads Stokkelien to bear the grunt of the offensive responsibility.
The responsibility should not be too burdensome against a Sandefjord squad that has yet to secure a win this season. The last time these two teams met Sandefjord fell 2-0 to Start.
Stabæk - Viking
Mikkel Diskerud and the rest of Stabæk's offense look for back to back Eliteserien wins in front of a home crowd this weekend as they welcome Viking to Telenor Arena.
Diskerud is an assured starter at center midfield.
Jon Jonsson's team took longer than usual to warm up this 2010 season, but they've been on fire as of late and hope to continue their red-hot winning streak Saturday.
If it weren't for a tie against Sandefjord on June 6th, Stabæk would have five straight wins in as many games. Jonsson will look to strikers like Veigar Pall Gunnarsson to continue that winning streak, as he secured a hat trick in their 4-3 win over Molde last weekend.
Similarly Viking is likely to bring a relentless attack led by Martin Fillo who too scored three goals in Viking's 3-1 win over Odd-Grenland last round.
Fans can expect a highly contested match between the two teams that sit just one place apart in the rankings with Viking in sixth and Stabæk in seventh.
Jonsson will still be without starter Daniel Nannskog, Pontus Farnerud and Johan Andersson.
The last time these two teams squared off was during the eighth round of play earlier this season when Viking won 2-0.
Keeper Steve Clark and striker Kenneth DiVita Jensen will watch from the sidelines as Hønefoss takes on Trømso at AKA Arena.
The 1. Division is unlikely to see any play from its American goal keepers. Joe Bednik will watch on as the reserve when Sogndal travels to Bryne.
Tyrel Lacey's season came to an abrupt end as FC Lyn's bankruptcy forced the team to withdraw from the league and cancel the remainder of the season's games.