Showing posts with label Kakkonen. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Kakkonen. Show all posts

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Bad Santa - amateur hour in Kakkonen

On the day the Guardian published an in-depth interview with Hercules coach Daniel Amokachi, the Northern/Western group of the Finnish third tier provided two matches which proved how much work is needed to raise basic standards further down the pyramid.

Amokachi raised a salient point about the availability of his players: "We started the season really well but then you find things that you only see in Finland – players missing games because they’ve already booked holidays, their friend is getting married, things like that. You can’t protest because you’re not really paying them. The professionalism angle is difficult. For them, football is just about getting together with friends and having fun but that’s not what our vision is all about, we want to take them to a different level and we’ve lost some who aren’t used to that kind of push."

On Sunday, two of the sides struggling at the foot of group C were in action away from home and completely proved Daniel's point.

Virkiä, from Lapua, have been in the relegation places all season - yet met notoriety a couple of months ago by beating Hercules 4-1, a shambolic display which raised all sorts of alarms regarding match fixing. In their penultimate fixture, they made the trip to Pori to play MuSa, challenging for promotion. In any case it'd be an uphill struggle - but they only arrived with ten players. They kicked off and gamely lasted the full ninety minutes. Alas it was all for not, with the final score of 8-0. Matters not helped with the second MuSa goal being scored from this corner. Or MuSa announcing their opponents fielding ten men with a tweet including #facepalm.

This wasn't the most outlandish football news from Kakkonen group C. That came further north in Kajaani, where AC Kajaani hosted "banter's" FC Santa Claus of Lapland. Santa again have struggled this season, while the hosts still had an outside chance of promotion via the play-offs. It's quite a long trip from Santa's grotto in Rovaniemi to Kajaani, over 300km. But Santa Claus decided to give some early presents to their opponents.

They arrived with eleven players. Not unheard of in the lower leagues in Finland. However... Three of the eleven were goalkeepers! So when the game kicked off, Juhani Kangas lined up in goal, with his fellow keepers Harri Nykänen and Juho Saukko playing outfield. Despite fielding three goalkeepers, Santa were 6-0 down at half-time, the final score a humbling 16-0. Michael Ibiyomi bagged a double hat-trick, Alberto Ramirez scored three, as did substitute Rundell Winchester.

Ibiyomi celebrates his sixth goal of the game

Strangely, the previous fixture between the two sides in July ended 0-9 to Kajaani. Clearly they haven't been very good little boys.

Monday, March 16, 2015

Tulos: Pukki, season tickets and Britpop

Another slow fortnight or so since the last Tulos. Here's a quick summary for those of you who have been away...

A superb offer for fans of teams in the western division of the Kakkonen in 2015. Season ticket holders at either of the three clubs in the post are also able to attend the home games of the others, so over forty matches for the price of one season ticket, as little as 50 Euros in some cases.

Teemu Pukki knows how to time things - 48 hours before the announcement of the next Finland squad (for the Northern Ireland game), he scores for Brøndby in their 2-0 win over OB.

With more speculation in England about the introduction of academy teams into professional leagues, I wrote for Put Niels In Goal about how the teams fare in Finland, featuring the Suomen Cup ties between teams from the same club... Featuring the joint team huddle of HIFK/3 and HIFK/4 (below).

Finland's FIFA ranking continues to drop, now just five places above their previous worst of September 2012.

The latest ETS interview was with Finland ladies midfielder Annika Kukkonen, who gave some excellent answers relating to gay players, sexism in the sport, and Gangnam Style...

The latest draw for the Suomen Cup was made on Monday by Jari Litmanen - he should be made to make every draw, he pulled out some absolute stunners. TPS v Inter and JanPa/Atletico Malmi v FC Lahti are particular highlights. One big shock result of round four was KPV defeating top division side Jaro 3-0.

Fifth round draw - looking forward to it already

Last update is a bit of an ego boost - I'm very honoured to have been included in a list of the top football blogs to follow in 2015, by Left-Wing Soccer. There are some wonderful writers on there, and they're all well worth a few minutes of your time.