Posted: 27.10.2006 10:47 Post subject: Feature articles on Rosenborg
Freshly published this week, UEFA.COM is also dedicating articles to the new Rosenborg triumph!
Rosenborg BK are closing in on their 14th Norwegian title in 15 seasons after a 3-1 win against their main championship contenders SK Brann in Bergen.
The match received almost unprecedented coverage in Norway with Brann hoping to secure their first league title since 1963. However, they went a goal down after 36 minutes as Øyvind Stroflor pounced to score after Brann keeper Håkan Opdal spilled a shot.
Brann equalised through a penalty converted by captain Martin Andresen early in the second half, but Rosenborg did not falter, taking the lead as Steffen Iversen headed home a Storflor cross before Marek Sapara completed the scoring with a terrific long-range free-kick.
Rosenborg are now six points ahead of Brann with two games to go. Rosenborg's goal difference is also 13 goals superior to Brann's. "It was a very nice win, but this isn't settled yet," said Rosenborg coach Knut Tørum. "We hope to win against Viking [FK] at the weekend to clinch the title in front of our own fans."
Rosenborg have now secured nine wins and a draw in ten games since Tørum took over as head coach when Per-Mathias Høgmo was granted sick leave. Høgmo has now returned to active duty but has agree to take a backseat role until the end of the season.
Steffen Iversen has enjoyed a renaissance since returning to his native Norway in 2004. A title winner with Vålerenga IF last season, the international forward is set to repeat the feat with Rosenborg BK who will reclaim the crown should they pick up a point against Viking FK on Sunday. After 13 successive years as champions, Rosenborg had to adjust to an accustomed role of challengers this campaign after Vålerenga's triumph. Fifteen goals in 19 league games so far from the 29-year-old former Tottenham Hotspur FC striker have gone a long way to ensuring Rosenborg will not be eclipsed for much longer.
uefa.com: What is the mood like in Trondheim?
Steffen Iversen: Very good. There's a small chance we could lose the title but we're not thinking about that. We've been very good in the last half of the season. The focus now is making sure we win the title on Sunday.
uefa.com: After a slow start you have won nine and drawn once in ten games to go top. Why the improvement?
Iversen: At the beginning of the season we had a very big squad with loads of good players that needed to play. I think we used too many players, we rotated too much and that made some people uncertain about their position in the team. After we settled on eleven or 14 players we started to believe more in ourselves and performed better. Since then we have been unstoppable, drawing one game and winning the rest. I think continuity has allowed the players to know each other better and get stronger.
uefa.com: It looks like being two titles in two years with two different clubs and 15 league goals scored this season. You seem to have a magic touch at the moment…
Iversen: It's been very good for me personally and I've been lucky to play with two good teams. I'm feeling great, but it's mostly because of the team behind me. They get me in the position to score all those goals.
uefa.com: After winning 13 straight titles, Rosenborg were nearly relegated last season. Now you're within touching distance of the title again. Why the sudden improvement?
It's good for the club on the whole to have one season that they didn't do so well, they can come back and start a new eraSteffen Iversen
Iversen: It's bound to happen that Rosenborg will have an off-season. People had been waiting for that for a long time. It's good for the club on the whole to have one season that they didn't do so well, they can come back and start a new era and get back on track winning titles again. It has actually been a positive thing for Rosenborg to struggle last season. Maybe it has woken them up a little bit for the future. Before things had been going very well and they were winning even if they were playing bad games. Now teams in Norway are better and more organized and it has become harder.
uefa.com: Is the goal to return to the UEFA Champions League?
Iversen: Of course it is and we will have the opportunity next year. Rosenborg need to be in the Champions League. They've done well in Europe in the past and still have a chance to do very well there. Rosenborg have a good enough team to be in the Champions League.
uefa.com: You played with Rosenborg in the UEFA Champions League for two seasons before joining Tottenham in 1996. What's your lasting memory?
Iversen: My biggest memory was beating AC Milan 2-1 away in 1996. That was my last game for Rosenborg and they got to the quarter-finals. That was the high point in the Champions League for me. It was an incredible achievement getting a Norwegian team to the quarter-finals, though it was easier then because you only had the group stage then straight into the quarter-finals. Obviously it was a great achievement for the club. We want to try do recreate that if we can.
uefa.com: Is it possible or has the competition moved on too far?
Iversen: It could happen again. Rosenborg are a good team. You can see in the Champions League how hard it is but all the teams that have got there are good enough to get through. You don't have easy games in the Champions League any more.
uefa.com: Which Rosenborg youngsters should we keep an eye out for in the future?
Iversen: We have loads of young players coming through. Alexandre Tetty has been playing really well this season, Per Ciljan Skjelbred too. We also have Michael Jamtfall who has been a little bit unlucky in the last part of the season with an injury but we have three or four players under 20 who have proved themselves in the league this year.
uefa.com: What next for Steffen Iversen?
Iversen: I've got two more years on my contract with Rosenborg so for me now I'm just concentrating on doing the best that I can here.
Nevertheless, I might be interesting to collect some "feature articles" on Rosenborg - not news.
The Times, 26/11/07
Conventional wisdom cites two key factors behind Rosenborg’s success. The first is Nils Arne Eggen, the long-time manager. He was in charge from 1988-2002 (with a year’s sabbatical in 1998) and has twice returned as a special adviser. Eggen is one of those monumental figures who often surface in football’s provinces – think of Guy Roux at Auxerre. He was a creative thinker and a sterling man-manager.
His unorthodox 4-3-3 formation, which often featured wingers the size of target men, and his sudden counter-attacking surges are the stuff of tactical legend. Man for man, most of the players who have pulled on a Rosenborg shirt over the years have been unremarkable in terms of ability. Yet there they were, fighting on equal terms with Europe’s giants.
Janteloven becomes unsustainable when you win 13 titles in a row. Why pretend you are no better or no more special than the rest when you are? It may well be that this played a big part in Eggen’s decision to step aside. He realised that his formula for success could take them only so far. Or maybe he did not want to be seen as too special. That would not be Janteloven.
«Long-termism is a rare trait to find in football management. Rosenborg’s policy was probably rooted in the strong personal opinions of Nils Arne Eggen, the man who led the club to the first 11 Norwegian championships and has just returned as a consultant, aged 63.»
“We should try and build the club along the lines of a Rosenborg or something like that. You’ve just got to look at Rosenborg’s record and what they’ve done in Europe. Domestically they were winning 10 or 12 titles in a row and getting to Champions League group stages 10 times. That’s the kind of consistency and targets we’ve got to look for at Rangers.
“I don’t compare Rangers to Rosenborg of course; Rangers are a massive club playing in a small league with small revenues and returns. But because of the turnover in players – you know how many there have been in my four-and-a-half years alone – it’s very difficult to maintain that sort of consistency. You need to get an infrastructure and a bunch of players who’ll be with you for the next five to six years. That’s why the likes of Chris Burke, Alan Hutton and Stevie Smith can hopefully continue to improve.”
In the past, Rosenborg could afford to play badly and still win, but fans based in the city of 160,000 awoke to the painful realisation that their rivals had been busy playing catch-up.
One year on, Rosenborg have returned to the top of the Norwegian pile after steadily rebuilding their shattered belief. The men from Trondheim registered a 4-1 home victory over Viking Stavanger last weekend to lay hands on the trophy with a game to spare, restoring the smiles to their fans' faces, but deepening the gloom among their rivals, who must have hoped the barren spell afflicting the league's dominant club would last a little longer.
Joined: 20 Dec 2004 Posts: 242 Location: Manilla, Ph.
Posted: 26.11.2007 13:52 Post subject:
Interesting article from the Times, 2mas. The journalist behind this piece (the latest one, that is...) is a certain Gabriele Marcotti, an Italian living in London, and no friend or fan of Norwegian fotball or Norwegian fotballers .
Yep, our Italian friend is a bit prejudiced against Rosenborg, implicit telling we are taking advantage of physical football. That is uncorrect. Rosenborg have always been a "playing team" in contrast to the Norwegian national team. Severals team in the Tippeliga however play physical "Egil Olsen kind of football" and this is one of the reasons why we are struggling at domestic, while playing great football in the Champions League, where our players are not kicked down all the time.
He is also wrong about "most players stayed" at Rosenborg. Three times, 1996 (especially), 1997 and 2000, we lost big parts of the starting line-up because mainly English clubs bought our players after good perfomances in the Champions League. Strand, Hoftun (rejected AC Milan) and Skammelsrud (6 months in Leverkusen) however were loyal to the club, and therefore the three are considered the greatest heros of our glorious period in the 90s.
[Nils Arne] Eggen, 66 mittlerweile, war der Visionär, der als Trainer in den 90er-Jahren Rosenborg Trondheim zum Synonym des triumphierenden Aussenseiters machte. Regelmässig schlugen die Norweger im Europacup die Reichen und Schönen wie Real Madrid, Milan oder Dortmund. Von 1992 bis 2004 wurden sie ununterbrochen norwegischer Meister. Oberflächlich betrachtet, ist es die Fortsetzung dieses erstaunlichen Erfolgs, dass Rosenborg heute mit Schalke 04 um die Qualifikation für den Champions-League-Achtelfinal streitet, nachdem es in dieser Vorrunde zweimal Valencia besiegte und Chelsea ein Unentschieden abrang. In Wirklichkeit aber ist Rosenborg, fünf Jahre nach Eggens selbst gewählter Pensionierung, kein Vorbild mehr.
Eggen gehörte zur Avantgarde, die Angriffszüge vorbestimmte. In dem Moment, in dem der defensive Mittelfeldspieler den Ball nach vorne passte, setzte sich eine Kette in Bewegung, und jeder der fünf Offensivspieler wusste, wie er zu laufen hatte, wann er den Ball erhalten würde, was er damit zu tun hatte. Sie hatten einige Varianten. Nichts war zufällig.
Mit Eggens Abschied ging Rosenborgs Identität verloren. Aber die Wahrheit hat immer ein paar Ecken und Kanten. Eggen trug seinen Teil zu den Schwierigkeiten der Nachfolgejahre bei, weil er betriebsblind eine Mannschaft zurückliess, die längst hätte renoviert werden müssen. Seitdem haben sich fünf Trainer in fünf Jahren versucht.
«Besonders bei den letzten zwei», sagt Eggen, «hat man nicht überlegt, dass sie einen Fussball spielen, der nicht Rosenborgs Weg entspricht», defensiver, direkter.
Es ist eine beliebige Mannschaft mit Profis aus zehn Nationen geworden. Fünfter wurde Rosenborg dieses Jahr nur in Norwegen; es sagt mehr über den Zustand der Mannschaft als der Rausch der Champions League.
Often the most obvious indicator of a club's success is how many honours they have collected throughout their history? One who certainly have no reason to hide when posed this question are Rosenborg Ballklub, better known simply as Rosenborg, who boast an impressive 22 top-flight titles and nine Norwegian cups.