Damallsvenskan 2018: Kopparbergs/Göteborg 4 - 2 FC Linköping
Credit: Emma Tobiasson/Vavel UK

The rain did not manage to stop the spectators coming out to watch the league leaders Kopparbergs/Göteborg welcome reigning champions FC Linköping to Stora Ullevi.

The two teams marched in to the tunes of a Gothenburg-inspired tune and the players were then presented to the jeering and cheers from the crowd, with the KGFC support waving their flags and chanting.

Strong start

Both teams started off the game solid, hungry for the ball and striving to keep the possession. The play moved quickly and whilst the guests did have a few good chances, it was Kopparberg that took charge early on.

The home team’s number one, Loes Geurts, pulled off a good save after Kosovare Asllani took a hard and low shot, and on the other end Stephanie Labbé in the Linköping goal was put to the test as Julia Zigiotti Olme almost got hold of the ball in front of goal, but Labbé was quicker and could grab it.

The tempo was high and the game was physical, but the play flowed and it would take until the 31st-minute until the home team scored their first goal.

The ball was played into the box by Kopparbergs, where it found the feet of Zigiotti that just steered it towards the goal. But there was Labbé with her quick reflexes and she pulled off a fantastic save with her outstretched leg.

The ball bounced up again and was headed towards goal, but hit the bar, before landing at the feet of Elin Rubensson that could just run it in. The Linköping goalkeeper fell during the scramble in the box and was left laying on the floor, but after a quick look over by the doctors, she’s back on her feet.

Rubensson would then again get on the scoresheet within minutes, as she charged up the field and took a shot from outside the box that dipped wonderfully, out of Labbé’s reach. Asllani lost her mark on the midfielder and could never regain the meter that she had lost, as Rubensson was off.

A lot of well-executed passes and intelligent play saw both teams challenging each other and even though Kopparbergs was 2-0 up after 36 minutes, no one relaxed, but the result stood until the half-time whistle.

Expanding the lead

It did not take long into the second half before another Kopparbergs player put herself on the score sheet. The ball came out to Zigiotti Olme on the wing, who ran like mad, and she, in turn, played it back to Olivia Schough who had followed up on her. Olivia Schough then charged towards the goal and curled the ball wonderfully past Labbé, who was out of position and could only really look as the ball passed her.

However, even at 3-0, the game was still exciting and Linköping did not stop pushing for a goal, still in the game.

Kopparbergs did not slow down and went 4-0 up through Rebecca Blomqvist after the young attacker poked the ball in behind Labbé and into the back of the net.

Blomqvist took her chance to add a fourth goal to the scoreline, and further strengthen her position as an up and coming attacker in the team. By now it would be expected to see a deflated Linköping but the guests kept going, kept creating chances and were at last rewarded for their fighting spirit.

Unexpected comeback

A good play outside of Kopparbergs box saw Filippa Angeldal step up to the ball and without hesitation she sent it into the back of the net in a frightful high pace, going in via the bar. Linköping then managed to adopt a flow after their first goal and pick up the pressure even more, now being the team taking charge.

After a slow run of play, Linköping's pressure was once again rewarded as Geurts saw the ball roll through her hands after a sloppy approach and the guests could score another one, this time through Frida Leonardsen Maanum who found the ball at her feet, for her to bang up in the roof of the goal.

But even with the 91st-minute goal and the momentum in hand, the guests couldn’t haul back and reverse the score, and the game ended 4-2 to Kopparbergs. It was a fine display of football that kept the spectators at the edge of their seats until the very last minute.

Linköping pulled off quite a comeback, even if it did not go all the way as Kopparbergs were showing that they are too strong, as they further cement their place as the league number one during the last games of the season.