Silkeborg IF – Match Report vs HB Køge 08/11/20

Silkeborg narrowly beat HB Køge 1-0 to continue their strong start to the Danish 1st Division season following their relegation from the Superliga last campaign. Silkeborg lined up in a 4-3-3 formation whilst HB Køge utilised a 4-4-2 system, with Silkeborg playing with a narrow front line that allowed their full backs to push high up the pitch in possession and provide width. The solitary goal came midway through the first-half with substitute Niclas Holm Pedersen scoring with his first touch of the game before Silkeborg had to weather some late pressure to earn a hard fought 3 points and a clean sheet.


  • 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, rewatch
  • D – Below average in this match

Magnus Mattsson

Player Profile:

  • Nationality: Danish
  • Age: 21
  • Date of birth: 25/02/1999
  • Current club: Silkeborg IF
  • Career: Silkeborg IF
  • Position: Attacking Midfield
  • Secondary position: Left Winger
  • Preferred foot: Right

Mattsson was very impressive in this game, already captaining Silkeborg despite being just 21 and clearly already established as the focal point of the team with most attacks flowing through him. He started on the left of the front three but played quite narrow and operated mostly in the left half-space and central areas which allowed him to drop between the lines and receive the ball to feet. He was at the centre of most of Silkeborg’s best moves before being substituted midway through the second-half.

He is an excellent ball carrier, able to move quickly with the ball at his feet and accelerate into space to drive the team forward. He utilised his pace and acceleration on a number of occasions to make bursting runs through the midfield, showing good close control and balance to dribble past challenges and take multiple opposition players out of the game. He linked up well with the front line, playing some nice short passing interchanges around the edge of the box and showing sharp movement off the ball to find space for a return pass.

He showed a great ability to progress the ball into promising positions in advanced areas but he was not able to capitalise from these positions in this game and he needs to be more clinical in the final third. His end product was just slightly missing that final pass or shot at the end of a move and, as a result, a number of promising attacks which Mattsson was instrumental in the creation of did not result in the goalkeeper being tested.

He also could improve his first touch when receiving the ball under pressure, he received the ball on the turn nicely a few times to lose an opponent and create space but when receiving a pass with his back to goal his first touch was often loose which allowed opponents to step in and win possession.

Rating: A1

Mattsson has had an excellent start to the season, with 9 goals and 1 assist in his opening 10 games, and on the evidence of this game he may be slightly too good for this division. The responsibility he has been given in this team will be a big positive for his development and I think he will have Superliga teams enquiring for his services in January.

Anders Klynge

Player Profile:

  • Nationality: Danish
  • Age: 20
  • Date of birth: 14/10/2000
  • Current club: Silkeborg IF
  • Career: Odense BK, Silkeborg IF
  • Position: Central Midfield
  • Preferred foot: Right

Klynge put in a good performance in the midfield three, working hard off the ball and covering a lot of ground as he looked to break up the play and disrupt the opponents rhythm in midfield.

He was neat and tidy on the ball, mostly recycling possession and keeping the play moving with short passes to feet. He is not the most creative player and didn’t provide much by way of attacking threat in this game but he was very reliable in possession and performed the functional but important tasks that often go under the radar. He has a low centre of gravity and showed good close control to retain possession well under pressure, barely misplacing a pass or giving the ball away throughout the entire game.

He did a lot of good defensive work, pressing opponents with intensity and showing good tenacity and aggression in midfield duels. He is not the most physical player so does not try to outmuscle opponents but persistently nips at the heels and looks to get a touch on the ball to dispossess them. However, he needs to channel this energy and ensure he is not giving away too many cheap fouls or pick up unnecessary bookings, both of which occurred in this game.

Rating: A2

Klynge is developing well and clearly benefitting from first-team football. He made a good decision to leave OB this summer and I don’t think he will be playing in the 1st Divison for long, either with Silkeborg or elsewhere.

Oscar Fuglsang

Player Profile:

  • Nationality: Danish
  • Age: 18
  • Date of birth: 12/03/2003
  • Current club: Silkeborg IF
  • Career: AGF Aarhus (Y), Silkeborg IF
  • Position: Right Back
  • Preferred foot: Right

Fuglsang had a very strong first-half at right back but was injured 5 minutes into the second-half and had to be substituted with what appeared to be a pulled hamstring.

He provided the team with good width on the right side, hugging the touchline high up the pitch as Silkeborg looked to build from the back and providing an attacking threat with well-timed overlapping runs in the final third into the space vacated by the narrow positioning of the right winger. He was not called into defensive action too often in the first-half as Silkeborg dominated possession but he stayed tight to his opponents when defending 1v1 and showed good awareness and positional play to cover runs into the box and stay goal side of his opponent.

He looked comfortable on the ball and played some nice passes infield into the feet of the front three but he needs to take more care with the delivery of these passes. He can help his teammates out a lot by making them easier to control with smooth, crisp passes along the floor instead of firing them in at shin height or bobbling them with a mishit. He had the right ideas in possession and showed good accuracy and composure under pressure but he just needs some improvement in the execution.

Rating: A2

Unfortunate to have to go off halfway through the game and that makes it difficult to give a well-rounded judgement but, at just 18, he looks a very promising player and one that I expect to be performing in the Superliga in the near future.

Mark Brink

Player Profile:

  • Nationality: Danish
  • Age: 22
  • Date of birth: 15/03/1998
  • Current club: Silkeborg IF
  • Career: Esbjerg fB, Silkeborg IF
  • Position: Central Midfield
  • Preferred foot: Right

Brink did a good job of anchoring the midfield, sitting deep to provide important protection for the back four and making himself available to receive the ball in the build-up as Silkeborg looked to play out from the back.

When given time on the ball his passing was very impressive, showing good vision and an ability to progress the ball up the pitch with line-breaking passes to feet. However, he needed to relax more on the ball when pressed by an opponent and trust his ability to play the same passes when given slightly less time. He looked rushed and slightly nervous in these situations and was too quick to get rid of the ball which led to possession being given away cheaply, this improved in the second half but was still an area to work on from the basis of this game.

He defended well and won the ball back a lot in the midfield, albeit often from situations where he gave the opponents possession in the first place. At 5’9 and with a slim build he is not the physically imposing midfielder you may often find in the position that he plays, but he has a good reading of the game and times his tackles well to win possession in a way that does not rely on physicality. He had good positional awareness when collecting the ball from the defence, always scanning the pitch before receiving a pass to give himself an idea of how much time he had on the ball and where his teammates where.

Rating: B1

Brink played well and performed a very important role in this game but I have question marks over his ability to play at a higher level.

Anders Hagelskjær

Player Profile:

  • Nationality: Danish
  • Age: 23
  • Date of birth: 16/02/1997
  • Current club: Silkeborg IF
  • Career: FC Midtjylland (Y), Skive IK, Silkeborg IF
  • Position: Centre Back
  • Preferred foot: Left

Hagelskjær played as the left sided centre back in a defence that looked strong for the most part en route to a clean sheet, although he struggled with the pace of the attackers at times, particularly when having to track runs in behind. He is a tall defender, standing at just under 6’3, with a lean physique but decent upper body strength that allowed him to perform well in defensive duels.

He was confident and positive in possession but was not always accurate with his passing, often looking to play forwards but having mixed success with his attempts to switch the play with long diagonals. He used his frame well both in aerial and ground duels, utilising his height to good effect to pin opponents and dominate in the air as well as using his long legs to dispossess the strikers receiving the ball with their back to goal.

He at his best and able to repel attacks most effectively when facing the play in a strong defensive structure, but he struggled to deal with transition play and counter-attacks, lacking the pace to keep up with attacking players and finding it difficult to regain the structure once it had been disrupted. His ground speed was okay in a foot race but his movement looked lethargic at times and he was slow to react to fast attacking moves, lacking the acceleration to regain lost yards.

Rating: B1

Hagelskjær may lack the mobility to cut it in a top division and I am not sure how much he will development from this point but he is a good player at this level and will be important to Silkeborg’s hopes of an immediate return to the Superliga.

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