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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
The match-dates and days have been announced. As we already knew the opening round is the 11th of November 2004. The final however is played the 26th of May 2005.

The 1st stage (the three groups) is played from the 11th of November to 24th of February. The two best teams of each group from the 1st stage progresses to the 2nd stage (two groups of three teams). The two 2nd stage group-winners goes to the final the 26th of May.

To avoid "colliding" with the CL-matches, the RL-matches will be played at Thursdays. The matches will be played 18.00, 18.30, 20.30 or 20.45.

The form of the groups have already been determined, and only the Norwegian and Swedish teams need to be found - which they will, when the current season finishes - before the groups can be completed.

Group 1:
#1 Norway
#2 Norway
#3 Denmark (Esbjerg)
#4 Sweden

Group 2:
#1 Denmark (FCK)
#2 Denmark (Brøndby)
#3 Sweden
#4 Norway

Group 3:
#1 Sweden
#2 Sweden
#3 Norway
#4 Denmark (OB)
 

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There is something strange about how the groups are divided. With the top two from each nation, one would expect, that one group each is dominated by one nation. It will be really interesting to see which teams do better than expected. Depending on who does good in one nation, you could end up with a "lots of fans" group of FCK, BIF, DIF and VIF or Brann, or we could end up with a group of almost only small teams. I think it is widely recognised, that in Scandinavia, smaller teams, with a smaller number of fans, smaller number of international players than the average, no national team players, etc, can still produce a good league result one season, but be horrible the next. I am quite certain it has happened in all three countries.

What kind of group would you most like to see? Do you have any preferences?

I wouldn't mind seeing Rosenborg, Brann, DIF and OB (can't choose another team, since they are already there) in the Norwegian group. That would definetly include a lot of strong feelings.
 
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Hej alla skandinaviska fotbolls fans!, är det någon som vet exakt vilka lag som ska delta i denna skandinaviska liga roayal league? skulle vara snällt om någon skrev ner alla deltagares namn. Jag har för mig att det pratades om att roayal league kanske skulle få en platts i CL! är det någon som vet mera om det eller gick inte uefa med på det?.
 

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Hmm it's the 4teams from each Scandinavian country and not all team are set,The winner of the league will get 7.25 million kr (a little under 1mill euro I think),yeah I also heard something about a place in CL;)
 

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Discussion Starter #7
At first the Royal League didn't the CL-spot, but I believe it's something they are working on getting in the future.
 

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duttend said:
It seems Frode Johnsen arn't all that excited about this league.
I can definitely understand why RBK and their players and fans may not be excited about Royal League. They are already regulars in the CRUAWUWTP League (that's the "Champions, Runners-up, And Whoever UEFA Wants To Participate League" for the uninformed :smileani: ), and I can understand why they may not see the need for this league at this point.

I guess the whole point of Royal League is to bring the other top teams of Scandinavia up to the RBK's level of international success, and thereby to increase the possibility of getting more Scandinavian teams into the CL by giving them more matches against top opposition.

My personal opinion of the Royal League is that it will be as much of a success as the participating clubs allow it to be. If the clubs take it seriously, field their best possible line-ups and play to win, I could see it becoming a success for all parties involved, clubs, players and fans. However, if the clubs treat it like a reserve team competition, the fans and TV-viewers will stay away, and it will be a big failure.

I for one would be very interested in seeing Brøndby play the likes of Malmö, Hammarby or Vålerenga instead of Randers, Herfølge or Viborg. But again, it all depends on the clubs' attitudes towards the Royal League. I guess we will just have to wait and see what happens.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I'm primarily quite optimistic about the turnament, but I must admit, I am a bit concerned about how serious the clubs might take the turnament. I'm pretty sure Brøndby for one will have the proper approach to the turnament. Our own boss, Per Bjerregaard, is one of the minds behind the turnament, for crying out loud. :)

But I can also understand why a club like Rosenborg might not share the same approach as some of the other clubs. Rosenborg's participation in the Champions League is of course the reason for their position on the matter.
 

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Two of the big concerns here in Norway are, of course, who qualifies for the tournament. Watching Lyn play Esbjerg will most likely draw a crowd of 200 people or so. I think most people hope at least Vålerenga and Brann will qualify because those teams got the best and most dedicated fans along with Lillestrøm.

And the games are shown on TV Norge, who mostly just send really bad reality shows and local tv. They've never shown any sport at all before afaik. They advertised for commentators in the unemployment office instead of approaching someone who were capable or knew anything about football. They are lucky if they get a few 100k viewers normally. It was hardly the best choice for RL. But maybe the big channels weren't interested.
 

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Ok, lets have a bit of a new start on this thread :)

What teams are gonna be in this from our dear neighbouring countries? :kiss:

The contributions from Sweden will be as follows:

Halmstad BK
as usual up there and with one round left they certainly are in a good position for the gold.
Mamlö FF
or Real Malmö as they've been named this season for their many transfers of highclass players (in swedish eyes). A broad squad with lots of potential, struggled a bit in the start but once the new players got used to their new team it's been as predicted, a good team.
IFK Göteborg
They lost Martin Ericsson, and for the exception of Niklas Alexandersson, basically the same squad from the last season that didn't do very well. But Bo Johansson made the best of the team and IFK performed over expectation. Unfortunatly for the Änglar-fans IFK are practically out of the gold fight, but they'll probably make their best in Royal league.

Those three are already there, the 4th spot is still an uncertain story. It's between:

4. Djurgårdens IF 36 - 31 38
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5. Kalmar FF 24 - 18 37
6. Hammarby 28 - 25 37

In the last round DIF are up against Helsingborg on homesoil, HeIF don't have much to play for, middle of the table with a pretty mediocre season behind them. DIF hasn't played lovely football lately, but they still manage to win. A win for DIF and they will take the last chance to get on the Royal League train.

If DIF fails to win against HeIF Hammary will meat Kalmar at home. So the winner there might have a chance to advance for Royal Leauge. Kalmar had a great start of the season and some were talking about gold at Fredrikskans. But just like for Hammarby the autumn part of the season has been less than good. Now they'll both fight for atleast some Nordic glory.

I'll try to keep you guys posted on the swedish side. How does it look in the rest of the Scandi leagues and again, what teams are in or almost in?
 

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Well, mainly the norwegian teams then, since the danes are already in :embarass:

But I'd really like an update on the danish teams (and the norwegian ones too of course ;) ), current form, key players etc :excited:
 

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In Norway these are the teams that can get to RL:

1. Rosenborg
2. Vålerenga
- chasing Rosenborg for the title with the same goal difference, but less scored goals
3. Brann - havn't secured a RL place yet, but are in a good position.
4. Tromsø/Lyn/Ham-Kam - all got 37 points
(4.) Lillestrøm - 34 points with much better goal difference than all the other teams, so a slight chance there...



Code:
[b]The table before the last round:[/b]

Rosenborg 	25 13 6 6 	48-33 45 
Vålerenga 	25 12 9 4 	37-22 45 
Brann 		25 12 3 10 	44-38 39 
Tromsø 		25 11 4 10 	35-31 37 
Lyn 		25 9 10 6 	29-27 37 
Ham-Kam 		25 10 7 8 	32-31 37 
Lillestrøm 	25 8 10 7 	43-31 34 
Odd Grenland 	25 9 7 9 		45-42 34 
Fredrikstad 	25 9 5 11 	40-49 32 
Viking 		25 6 12 7 	26-31 30 
Molde 		25 6 10 9 	31-37 28 
Bodø/Glimt 	25 7 6 12 	28-38 27 
Stabæk 		25 7 6 12 	25-37 27 
Sogndal 		25 5 7 13 	38-54 22



And Saturday's last round (with my predictions accoring to their form):
Lillestrøm - Brann 18:00 1-1
Molde - Bodø/Glimt 18:00 1-2
Odd Grenland - Ham-Kam 18:00 1-1
Rosenborg - Lyn 18:00 2-0
Tromsø - Sogndal 18:00 1-1
Viking - Fredrikstad 18:00 1-2
Vålerenga - Stabæk 18:00 2-0

Which leaves these four teams on top with RL spots:
Code:
Rosenborg 	25 13 6 6 	50-33 48 
Vålerenga 	25 12 9 4 	39-22 48 
Brann 		25 12 3 10 	45-39 40 
Tromsø 		25 11 4 10 	36-32 38
Rosenborg you probably know abit about. New signings this season: Robbie Russell, Daniel Braaten, Mikael Dorsin and Torstein Helstad.

Vålerenga are this seasons surprise and they have played superb. Last season they played play-off to keep the place and were lucky to do so. But by signing two ex-RBK players: Steffen Iversen and Arni Gautur Arason their team has improved alot. Before the season they signed many class players as Brocken, Gashi (Norwegian international who was loaned to VIF before the season), Jørgen Jalland, Per Egil Swift, one of Norway's biggest talents: at that time 18 yo Daniel Fredheim Holm and Tor Henning Hamre (who scored 39 goals in one season in the Estonian league before this season). Have played some good football and got the best fans in Norway to help them.

Brann have signed even more players, but didn't get their success before mid-season or something. Signed Kvisvik last season who saved them from what seemed to look like relegation material. This season they signed Soma (one of the absolutly best players in the TL), Bjarnason, Kalvenes, Klock, Ystaas, Macallister, Sæternes, Scharner, Sanne, Miller. All quite good players and many of them are internationals. Got a dangerous team when in form

Tromsø were this season second surprise. Played superb this spring and looked to be seriously challenging Rosenborg for the title leading the table for quite a while. Have fell off their form though and havn't been v good this fall. Surprisingly I don't think they signed any player before the season, but signed Stolpa and Patrice Bernier in the summer break. I think they'll get a hard time in RL after losing their absolutly most "success-bringing" person, the manger Per-Mathias Høgmo.
 

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Orange said:
A good prediction, but I think Tromsø and Molde will win.
Yes, I thought about that aswell, but Molde was lucky to win the Stabæk match scoring on literally every second chance. Tromsø have been poor the last matches and this fall and got two straight losses... Sogndal on the other hand have 2 wins and 1 draw (vs Vålerenga away!!) the last 3 matches. I based the predictions on form this autumn. Here's the "autumn table" if you're interested to have a look:

Code:
Fredrikstad	11 7 2 2	20-15 	23
Vålerenga		11 6 4 1	22-9	22
Brann 		11 6 2 3	20-13	20
Rosenborg		11 6 1 4	20-16 	19
Lyn		11 4 6 1	13-13 	18
Bodø Glimt	11 4 3 4	16-13 	15
Hamkam		11 4 3 4	12-10  	15
Viking		11 3 5 3	13-15	14
Odd Grenland	11 4 1 6	21-23	13
Lillestrøm	11 2 5 4	15-17	11
Stabæk		11 1 3 5	12-16	12
Molde		11 2 4 5	14-19	10
Tromsø		11 2 3 6	9-17	9
Sogndal		11 2 3 7	15-26	8
Quite interesting...
 

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Here is a small update for the Danish participants, while the cup match between two of them, Esbjerg and Brøndby, is on my TV in the background :) .

The Danish participants will be :

1. FC København
2. Brøndby IF
3. Esbjerg fB
4. Odense BK

FC København : The reigning champions have struggled quite a bit this year, and after 12 matches they are placed 8th in the league, 10 points behind leaders Brøndby. FCK have yet to play up to their best form this season. They crashed out of Europe in embarrassing fashion, and their usually solid defense has allowed surprisingly many goals. Newly acquired Swedish international, Tobias Linderoth, was expected to be the midfield general, but he has been a disappointment so far.

Key players : Magne Hoseth (midfield), Sibusiso Zuma (forward), Bo Svensson (defense)

Weaknesses : The lack of a top class goalkeeper has been evident for quite some time now. Magnus Kihlstedt makes the odd great save, but his mistakes have cost FCK dearly, not only this year, but ever since he arrived at the club. The talented forward tandem of Sibusiso Zuma and Alvaro Santos - especially the latter - appears out of shape at the moment.

Brøndby IF : We have had quite a good start to the season. After as slow start (a home loss to Odense in the opener), the disastrous European exit (caused by the players' strike) and the sale of a few key players (Mattias Jonson, Andreas Jakobsson), the team has really come into their own. We are unbeaten since the opening day, and have a six point gap to second placed Viborg. On top of that, we actually play well most of the time, now that Michael Laudrup has changed his trademark 4-3-3 system into a 4-4-2/4-2-3-1 hybrid.

Key players : Johan Elmander (forward), Thomas Kahlenberg (midfield), Per Nielsen (defense)

Weaknesses : The team is very young, and it remains to be seen how they will handle adversity for a sustained period of time. Also, the midfield could be a problem area if players such as Thomas Kahlenberg or Martin Retov suffered injuries.

Esbjerg fB : Last year's surprise team has not been able to live up to the success of last season, in part because of the injury to forward Jess Thorup, who is a very important player in their system. They are currently 7th in the league, 10 points behind Brøndby. The line-up is talented, especially midfielder Jan Kristiansen, who is a member of the Danish NT. Other players, such as defender Anders Møller Christensen has been mentioned as a future international. Coach Ove Pedersen is one of the smartest coaching minds in Denmark.

Key players : Jan Kristiansen (midfield), Jess Thorup (forward), Anders Møller Christensen (defense)

Weaknesses : The lack of depth in the squad leaves EfB very vulnerable to injuries. Their backups are mostly young players from the club's own youth ranks.

Odense BK : With Zambian Mwape Miti and the well-traveled Steffen Højer, OB fields one of the strongest forward pairings in the Danish league, although they haven't quite enjoyed the same success they did last season. Currently 4th in the league, 8 points behind Brøndby, whom they beat in the season opener at Brøndby Stadion. Polish keeper, Arek Onyszko, may very well be the best in the Danish league.

Key players : Fernando Derveld (defense), Arek Onyszko (goalkeeper), Mwape Miti/Steffen Højer (forwards)

Weaknesses : OB is one of the most inconsistent teams you will ever see. On their best day, they look like world-beaters, only to look utterly hopeless the next week. They tend to do fairly well against the best teams in the league, but often fail miserably against the lower placed teams.

I hope that the other Danes on the board will add to this.

...oh, and Brøndby just beat Esbjerg 1-0 to advance in the cup. Earlier, FCK beat OB 2-1, so the four Danish Royal League participants actually all faced each other.
 
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