Underdogs IFK Göteborg held the defending Swedish champions Malmö FF in a two-goal draw at Ullevi Stadium in Gothenburg in the opening match of the 2017 Allsvenskan. IFK Göteborg’s 18-year-old goalkeeper Pontus Dahlberg made vital saves that gained his club a point in the opening match.
Jörgen Lennartsson, the head coach of IFK Göteborg, decided to start with the 18-year-old goalkeeper Pontus Dahlberg in goal. The opening match against the defending Swedish champions Malmö FF would be Pontus Dahlberg’s debut in Allsvenskan, which was an immense task for such a young player. Jörgen Lennartsson also decided to bench Tobias Hysén, the son of the former Liverpool defender Glenn Hysén, and started with Mikael Boman up front.
IFK Göteborg | S-XI: Dahlberg (GK), Salomonsson, Bjärsmyr (C), Rogne, Jamieson, Diskerud, Albaek, Björdal, Rieks, Eriksson, Boman. Substitutes: Dahlin (GK), Omarsson, Hysén, Smedberg, Razak, Wiklander, Ohlsson.
Magnus Pehrsson made his Allsvenskan debut as the new head coach of the defending Swedish champions Malmö FF. Magnus Pehrsson started with Johan Wiland in goal. Behrang Safari started as left-back, benching Pa Konate. Pawel Cibicki and Marcus Rosenberg were picked and started up front against their big rivals IFK Göteborg. Former IFK Göteborg academy and senior player Tobias Sana was included in the starting eleven against his former club.
Malmö FF | S-XI: Wiland (GK), Tinnerholm, Nielsen, Brorsson, Safari, Eikrem, Lewicki, Rakip, Sana, Rosenberg (C), Cibicki. Substitutes: Andersson (GK), Christiansen, Konate, Jeremejeff, Carvalho, Vindheim, Svanberg.
The hosts, IFK Göteborg, opened the first 15 minutes very well pressing the defending Swedish champions Malmö FF very high. IFK Göteborg were defensively disciplined and relied on counterattacks, which were effective in the first 15 minutes. In the eighth minute, Mikael Boman scored the opening and first goal of 2017 Allsvenskan after a well-delivered corner-kick by Mads Albaek. After conceding that goal, Malmö FF gathered themselves and gained more and more possession succesively. Malmö FF strikers tested IFK Göteborg’s young goalkeeper Pontus Dahlberg but he made several vital saves for his IFK Göteborg. Nevertheless, Pawel Cibicki scored the equalising goal for the defending Swedish champions Malmö FF in 34th minute from a well-taken set-piece. The first half ended IFK Göteborg 1, Malmö FF 1.
Malmö FF started the second half quite better than the first half after Magnus Pehrsson decided to make substitution replacing Magnus Wolff Eikrem with Alexander Jeremejeff. Tobias Hysén had perhaps the best chance in the second half but his effort was denied by the Malmö FF goalkeeper Johan Wiland. A frustrated Tobias Sana was taken off the field after 72 minutes of play, which was a failure. Both clubs failed to score more or the winning goal, the second half and match ended IFK Göteborg 1, Malmö FF 1.
It was an entertaining but not-so-exciting match as the opening match of the 2017 Allsvenskan, the top tier Swedish football league, between IFK Göteborg and the defending Swedish champions Malmö FF ended in a two-goal draw. IFK Göteborg were defensively disciplined throughout the match but they were not very effective in their attacks and counterattacks, relying too much on crosses into the Malmö FF’s penalty box. Malmö FF were also defensively solid throughout the match and effective in their attacks but they lacked precision in front of the goal. Nevertheless, IFK Göteborg’s 18-year-old goalkeeper Pontus Dahlberg made some vital saves. IFK Göteborg and Malmö FF shared a point after today’s opening match and are temporarily joint top of the league table.
IFK Göteborg will face IK Sirius away from home on April 9 and Malmö FF will host GIF Sundsvall on April 11 in their respective up-coming fixture.
IFK Göteborg: Dahlberg – 4.5/5, Salomonsson – 3/5, Bjärsmyr 3.5/5, Rogne – 3/5, Jamieson – 4/5, Diskerud – 3.5/5, Albaek – 3.5/5, Björdal – 3.5/5, Rieks – 4/5, Eriksson – 3/5, Boman – 4/5. | Substitutes: Hysén – 4/5, Omarsson – 3/5, Razak – 3/5.
Malmö FF: Wiland – 3.5/5, Tinnerholm – 3/5, Nielsen – 3/5, Brorsson – 3/5, Safari – 3/5, Eikrem – 3/5, Lewicki – 3/5, Rakip – 2.5/5, Sana – 1/5, Rosenberg – 3/5, Cibicki – 4/5. | Substitutes: Jeremejeff – 3/5, Christiansen – 3/5, Konate – 3/5.
MAN OF THE MATCH
Pontus Dahlberg (IFK Göteborg)