Varbergs BoIS – Match Report vs Mjällby AIF 16/07/2020

In their first season ever in the top flight of Swedish Varbergs BoIS keeps surprising. In a difficult home game against Mjällby AIF Varbergs grabbed three points, which made them climb up to the third place in the league table. Varbergs played in a quite defensive 3-4-3 and played a strong first half.

In the second half Mjällby, which also played with three central defenders, took over the initiative at the start. Joakim Persson’s Varbergs didn’t gave away a lot of chances and slowly took over control of the game. In the 90th minute striker Seljmani scored the only goal of the game after Varbergs got a penalty.

Ratings:

  • A1 – Very good, could play higher
  • A2 – Strong potential to play higher
  • B1 – Good, strong player at level
  • B2 – Potential to be strong player at level
  • C – Average for the level, re-watch
  • D – Below average in this match

 

Astrit Seljmani

Astrit Seljmani

Player Profile:

  • Nationality: Swedish/Kosovar
  • Age: 23
  • Date of birth: 12/03/1997
  • Current club: Varbergs BoIS
  • Career: BK Olympic (Y), Ängelholm, Kristianstad, Rosengård, Torns IF, Varbergs BoIS
  • Position: Striker
  • Secondary position: Left Wing
  • Preferred foot: Right

Astrit Seljmani played as the striker for Varbergs BoIS and had a difficult game. Seljmani was quite isolated from wingers/attacking midfielders Tranberg and Norlin, but showed some promising qualities. The 6’0” Swede is very strong on the ball and puts a lot of aggression in his ground duels. His hold up play was quite good and Mjällby often needed two defenders to stop him. In the final minutes of the game Seljmani scored the only goal of the games after Varbergs won a penalty, scoring his third goal in his third match this season.

Seljmani was very active this game, roaming a lot on the pitch, but only got 26 touches which obviously is not enough. Varbergs had a lot of problems in their build-up play. They tried to play it out the back, but midfielders Le Roux and Winbo didn’t have much to say in the centre of the pitch. Varbergs BoIS start playing more long balls, but only 33% was successful. Seljmani a couple of smart runs and was really dangerous in the box.

With the ball on his feet Seljmani was surprisingly technical. He showed his good first touch multiple times and was easily able to beat an opponent with the ball with his dribbling and agility. He got the ball on the wing a couple of times putting in some good crosses with both feet.

Seljmani wore the captain’s armband during the game against Mjällby and showed his leadership. He was communicating a lot with his teammates and working hard the whole 90 minutes. He covered a lot of ground pressing and even tracked back at times.

Rating: A2/B1

Despite his great stats last season Seljmani didn’t play a great game against Mjällby, but I think he really suffered from his team not being able to build-up from the back well. In the last weeks he has been linked with Eredivsie-side SC Heerenveen, where I think he would be a good fit.

Jon Birkfeldt

Jon Birkfeldt

Player Profile:

  • Nationality: Swedish
  • Age: 24
  • Date of birth: 03/06/1996
  • Current club: Varbergs BoIS
  • Career: Helsingborgs IF (Y), Atvidabergs FF, IFK Värnamo, IK Frej, Varbergs BoIS
  • Position: Centre Back
  • Secondary position: Left Back, Right Back
  • Preferred foot: Right

It was a busy game for Jon Birkfeldt. The centre back put in a solid performance as the central defender in Varberg’s three-man defence. Birkfeldt isn’t a very tall centre back at 6’0”, but did a great job in the air, winning 20 of his 27 aerial duels. On the ground Birkfeldt also did a solid job. He always positioned himself very smart in 1v1’s and had enough pace to keep up his opponents. He showed some flaws when clearing the ball, he sometimes missed some composure giving the ball away too easy.

Birkfeldt’s ball distribution was decent. His didn’t make any weird errors with his short passes and was calm when Mjällby tried to press, which didn’t happen too much. His long passing however has to be improved, all his long forward passes were unsuccessful against this game. Birkfeldt mostly chose to give the ball to his other centre backs, Zackrisson and Lindner, who were more involved in the build up.

Rating: B1

Birkfeldt is great defensively, but has to improve on the ball. He played a big part in keeping a clean sheet against Mjällby and in his first season in the Allsvenskan he really surprised.

 

Gustaf Norlin

Gustaf Norlin

Player Profile:

  • Nationality: Swedish
  • Age: 23
  • Date of birth: 09/01/1997
  • Current club: Varbergs BoIS
  • Career: Lidköpings FK, Skövde AIK, Varbergs BoIS
  • Position: Centre Midfield
  • Secondary position: Attacking Midfield, Right Wing
  • Preferred foot: Left

Gustaf Norlin played as a right winger and put in a decent performance against Mjällby. Norlin played quite narrow almost making him a shadow striker or attacking midfielder, but was the most dangerous from the right. In the 4th minute he created the biggest chance of the game. After intercepting a pass from Lofgren on the right he dribbled past his opponent and put in a dangerous low cross, which was just too sharp for Astrit Seljmani.

Norlin was really neat on the ball and had a passing accuracy of 90% at the end of the game. Norlin did well in the small spaces given by Mjällby and only lost possession four times in the game. He doesn’t seem to be a very physical player, but still managed to always win his duels. The Swede isn’t a very explosive winger, but still had enough pace to get past his opponent on the right.

The big problem for Norlin was that he also suffered from the build-up play of Varbergs. He only got 24 touches in the game and should’ve been more involved in the game.

Rating: B2

Norlin showed that he has the quality to be a strong player in the Allsvenskan, but didn’t show it enough. He would probably do better in the centre of the pitch.

Albin Winbo

Albin Winbo

Player Profile:

  • Nationality: Swedish
  • Age: 22
  • Date of birth: 27/10/1997
  • Current club: Varbergs BoIS
  • Career: Tvååkers IF, Varbergs BoIS
  • Position: Centre Midfield
  • Secondary position: Defensive Midfield, Attacking Midfield
  • Preferred foot: Left

Albin Winbo played as the more defensive of the two centre midfielders. The 22-year old was really involved in the build-up play of Varbergs, getting 46 touches before getting subbed of in the 61st minute, but didn’t really do anything special with the ball. In possession Winbo positioned himself as the left back, which resulted in a big gap in the midfield, which Varbergs barely used. On the ball he played really safe and mostly played the ball back to one of the centre backs. Winbo didn’t make any progressive runs against Mjällby and only played four successful passes in the final third.

Winbo’s technique seemed fine. He had a good first touch, good turning speed with the ball and his short passing was good. However it felt like the midfielder didn’t have any confidence. He didn’t attempt any dribbles and played really safe.

Defensively he wasn’t doing good either. Winbo clearly lacks physically and was outmuscled quite easily by other players. He only won 50% of his defensive duels and didn’t win any aerial duels. Winbo read the game quite well however and positioned himself smartly, intercepting multiple balls.

Rating: C

Technically Winbo could be a good player in Sweden, but it was quite a poor showing by him. He has a fine left foot, but is very vulnerable defensively.

Keanin Ayer

Keanin Ayer

Player Profile:

  • Nationality: South African/Ghanese
  • Age: 20
  • Date of birth: 21/04/2000
  • Current club: Varbergs BoIS
  • Career: Right to Dream Academy (Y), Varbergs BoIS
  • Position: Right Wing-Back
  • Secondary position: Centre Midfield, Right Back
  • Preferred foot: Right

Keanin Ayer didn’t manage to impress at all against Mjällby. The 5’6″ right wing-back lacks a lot of strength and was very vulnerable in the air. Ayer played very wide near the sideline and really struggled this game.

On the ball he made a lot of errors and he only completed 37% of his passes. Ayer didn’t have any space on the right and got pressured really easy by the opponents, so he mostly just played the ball back to his defenders. Defensively Ayer couldn’t really get anything done either. He was outmuscled easily by his opponents I can’t remember him winning any defensive duel.

Rating: D

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