Every single guide book that has ever been written about a Nordic country contains that line or a variation on it. Tonight I realised how true it actually is. It was bright and sunny at kickoff, but the breezy conditions meant that by halftime I was fighting frostbite in my fingers.
Viikingit are a big and ‘physical’ team. With the lowest budget in Veikkausliiga they have little option but to play to their strengths, but surely they could pass the ball on the floor once every ten minutes or so? Some of their challenges were fantastically brutal-not dirty, or fouls, just a masterclass in getting your massive frame in the right place at just the right moment. It seemed like Wiss and Pohja were bouncing off giants when they tried to make a challenge for a 50-50.
The keeper is a mentalist too. Luis Fernando is Portuguese, and he had a very good game today. The Viikingit defence got bodies in the way and stopped certain goals during several goalmouth scrambles. They also caused a bit of fisticuffs when Niemi finally snapped near the end and pushed one of their defenders.
Tampere showed glimpses of what they’re capable of and the goal came from a neat throughball from Pohja and smart finish from Niemi. They’ll have to deal with the physical stuff better than this though. Still, it’s an improvement on last season-VPS came to Tampere with similar tactics and got the points in 2006, so slowly but surely things are getting better. If they can win games like this they’ll win the title.-these were the games that used to cause problems.
Tampere United 1 Viikingit 0
MyPa 2 Jaro 0
IFK 0 Haka 1
Inter 1 TPS 1