What a weekend it was, packed full of action from start to finish. Danes will have lots to smile about as their stars stole the limelight, with eight different Nordic players scoring across Europe.
Peter Lovenkrands was the first Scandinavian to make an impression this weekend. The Danish star scored two goals as a sub as his Newcastle United side romped to a 5-1 win against Cardiff City. His manager Chris Hughton was full of praise for the former Rangers player “We needed a little injection and Peter certainly gave us that. His two goals were very well taken. He came into the game when it was probably already won, but he showed a terrific attitude to make an impact”. Lovenkrand`s brace took his goal tally to six since the turn of the year .
Jon Dahl Tomasson also enjoyed a good night on Friday. The Denmark international played a pivotal role as his Feyenoord earned a deserved one nil victory over basement club RKC Waalwijk. Tomasson`s lobbed effort shortly after the interval proved the difference between the two sides.
Elswehere fellow Dane Brian Jensen played a key role as Brian Laws ground out his first win as Burnley manager with a 2-1 home victory over West Ham. Jensen wasn’t the only victorious Danish goalkeeper in the England this weekend as Thomas Sorensen`s Stoke City side cruised to a three nil win over Blackburn Rovers. Kasper Schmeichel`s Notts County side also recorded a one nil win away to Grimsby.
One unfortunate Danish goalkeeper was Casper Ankergren. The former Brondby star has rather had a week to forget. In midweek he delivered an outstanding performance in the first half as Leeds battled against Spurs in the FA Cup. His performance in the second half was at times questionable and he was at fault for the third goal as Spurs earned a 3-1 win. The weekend wasn’t much better for Ankergren as an injury time goal for Hartlepool meant his side would have to be content with a two all draw.
Morten Rasmussen bagged his second goal on his first start for his new club as his Celtic side ran out 4-2 winners in a tense battle with Dunfermline in the Scottish cup. Not content with that he also tried to claim an own goal “I was going after the ball and I think I got a little touch as did the defender, so I will take the goal and that makes it two today! But it was important that we won and got through to the next round”.
Dennis Rommedahl bagged a goal as his Ajax side trounced FC Twente 3-0. Rommedahl came on as a sub to complete a resounding victory that pushes Ajax closer to the Enschede side. Swede Rasmus Lindgren initiated the movement towards the Dane`s goal.
Daniel Agger`s Liverpool side emerged victorious from a ferocious Liverpool derby, beating fierce rivals Everton one nil.
Palermo ran out 2-1 winners at Parma. Simon Kjaer was his usual consistent self as his side closed the gap on the top four.
Danish striker Mads Junker further added to an action packed weekend for Danish born players. He bagged the second goal as his Roda JC side beat Sparta Rotterdam 2-1.
Two more Danes also hit the target as FC Groningen went down 4-3 away to Heracles. Recently capped international Thomas Enevoldsen bagged a brace and his compatriot Morten Nordstrand, who is on loan from FC Kobenhavn added a third. Their efforts proved in vain though as their side were reduced to nine men and threw away a 3-1 lead.
Bo Svensson scored his first ever goal for Mainz, which secured a 1-0 win over Borussia Monchengladbach.
Swedish striker Johan Elmander waisted yet another great opportunity as Bolton Wanderers drew 0-0 with Fulham in a rather drab affair. A clash of heads between him and Brede Hangeland will no doubt be used as the reason for wasting a glorious effort. Elmander is looking nothing like a £10M player Both teams possessed seven Scandinavians between them, with Swede David Elm making his first start for the Cottagers .
Fellow Swede Sebastian Larsson was substituted for the second time in a week as Birmingham City rose from the dead to secure a late 2-1 win over arch rivals Wolves .
Ola Toivonen found the net as PSV moved clear at the top of the Eredivisie. The Swedish star struck home a rebound effort to take his goal tally to 12 for the season as the Eindhoven side ran out two nil winners against ADO Den Haag. Earlier in the season Toivonen bagged four against ADO as PSV romped home with a 5-1 win.
Emil Hallfredsson struck the only goal as his Barnsley side recorded a one nil win over Watford. The Icelandic international is currently on loan from Serie A side Reggina and is keen to stay on at Oakwell “I’m happy here and I would consider staying for longer, if there was an offer to stay beyond my loan deal because I am playing regularly here . There is no reason why we cant make the playoffs”.
Herman Hreirdarsson was absent as his Portsmouth side crashed 5-0 to Manchester United. The Iceland captain will probably be happy he missed this one as his side bizarrely scored three own goals.
Eidur Gudjohnsen must wait or his debut as he didn’t feature during Spurs nil all draw with Aston Villa. The Iceland star would have been hoping to feature as this week he has been linked to the woman at the centre of the John Terry affair, Vanessa Peroncell.
Three Iceland stars featured as Reading fought to a hard earned 2-1 victory over Doncaster Rovers. Ivar Ingimarsson and Brynjar Gunnarsson started the game for the Royals while Gunnar Heidar Thorvaldsson emerged from the bench to play his part. Their influential compatriot Gylfi Sigurdsson was a notable absentee from Reading`s midfield due to injury.
Norwegian players didn’t enjoy the best time of it this weekend. Morten Gamst Pedersen`s Blackburn side got stuffed at Stoke while Thorstein Helstad played a part as his Le Mans side fell further towards relegation after a 2-1 defeat at Lens. Elsewhere there was good news as John Carew made a return to the Aston Villa bench. The former Rosenborg striker was brought on after only 22 minutes to replace the injured Emile Heskey.
John Arne Riise`s Roma side have continued their rich vein of form as of late with a 1-0 victory over Fiorentina.
Pedersen`s team`s defeat has since been marred by the announcement that one of their fans died during an altercation at half time inside the ground. The facts are not known as of yet however this sick tragedy is believed to have occurred due to in-fighting amongst Blackburn`s own fans.