Elfsborg and AIK are set to play in the UEFA Europa League next year as their battle for second place continues.
Elfsborg and AIK nailed down two of the remaining three spots in European play as they continued their battle for second place in the 2011 Allsvenskan.
Elfsborg ended any shot Gefle had at Europe with a 3-0 win at Borås Arena. AIK did the same to GAIS, beating the Göteborg side 2-1 at Råsunda Stadium. The two teams are level with 54 points—seven behind champions Helsingborg—with two matches left to play. Elfsborg is in second place on goal difference.
BK Häcken increased its lead in the battle for the fourth and final spot in Europe, knocking off Trelleborg 1-0 at Rambergsvallen. Häcken has 49 points while fifth-place GAIS has 45.
Malmö, which remains the defending league champions until Helsingborg officially takes the title Oct. 23, put itself in position to make a push for fourth place with a 2-1 win over Kalmar at Guldfågeln Arena. MFF is in seventh place with 42 points, but because of European play, it has two games in hand on the rest of the league. If it wins its four remaining matches and Häcken loses once and GAIS twice, Malmö could sneak into fourth place.
At the other end of the table, Halmstad is already making plans to play in the Superettan next year. Halmstad is dead last with just 14 points. Trelleborg sits in the second relegation spot with 25 points, three behind Syrianska, which is in the relegation playoff spot. Norrköping is fourth from the bottom with 31 points.
Elfsborg 3, Gefle 0
BORÅS—Niklas Hult had a goal and an assist to lead Elfsborg to a 3-0 win over Gefle Oct. 1 at Borås Arena. Hult opened the scoring at the 21st minute and assisted on David Elm’s goal in the 26th minute. Oscar Hiljemark added the third goal in the 58th minute.
AIK 2, GAIS 1
SOLNA—AIK weathered a late storm to knock off GAIS 2-1 Oct. 2 at Råsunda Stadium. Lalawele Atakora scored his second goal since joining AIK in August to stake the Gnaget to a 1-0 lead after six minutes. Gabriel Özkan made the score 2-0 with his first goal of the season in the 68th minute. Mervan Celik led a comeback try from GAIS scoring in the 83rd minute. The goal was Celik’s 14th of the year.
BK Häcken 1, Trelleborg 0
GÖTEBORG—Häcken pushed Trelleborg to the brink of relegation with a 1-0 win Oct. 1 at Rambergsvallen. Mattias Östberg scored the lone goal of the match in the 69th minute off a pass from Rene Makondele Muzola.
Malmö 2, Kalmar 1
KALMAR—Malmö inched closer to a European spot with a 2-1 win over Kalmar Oct. 2 at Guldfågeln Arena. Ricardo Santos broke open a scoreless game in the 66th minute when he fired Kalmar into the lead. Jiloan Hamaz tied the match two minutes later. Jimmy Durmaz scored the winner for Malmö at the 82-minute mark.
Örebro 1, Halmstad 0
ÖREBRO—Valdet Rama scored in the 18th minute to lead Örebro to a 1-0 win over relegation-bound Halmstad Oct. 2 at Behrn Arema. The goal was Rama’s team-leading seventh of the season. With the loss, Halmstad has no chance to remain in the Allsvenskan.
Mjällby 1, Göteborg 0
GÖTEBORG—Mjällby used a late goal to squeeze past IFK Göteborg 1-0 Oct. 1 at Gamla Ullevi Stadium. David Löfquist scored the deciding goal in the 88th minute, giving him six goals this season.
Helsingborg 1, Norrköping 1
HELSINGBORG—The new champs emptied their bench, using a mix of regulars and subs to play Norrköping to a 1-1 draw Oct. 2 at Olympia Stadium. Matthis Lindström put HIF in front after 32 minutes. Shpetim Hasani tied the game for Peking in the 76th minute.
Syrianska 0, Djurgården 0
SÖDERTÄLJE—Syrianska and Djurgården each gained valuable footing in their battle to avoid relegation, playing a scoreless draw Oct. 2 at Södertälje Football Arena.
by Chipp Reid