Goals from Victor Edvardsen and Abdelrahman Saidi helped Degerfors defeat rivals Örebro 2-1 in a result that eases their relegation worries in the Allsvenskan.
For Örebro, the table situation looks increasingly precarious and relegation to Superettan are now getting closer and closer.
Örebro were looking for a victory at the Behrn Arena to keep their hopes of remaining in the Allsvenskan for 2022 alive with a nine point gap to Degerfors at kick-off.
The match was just five minutes old when Örebro were forced to an early change, when Martin Broberg left the field with a knee injury. The forward was replaced by David Seger.
As the first half went on Degerfors took over more and more of the game and in the 25th minute, the visitors broke the dead lock. Star man Victor Edvardsen, who has had rumours surrounding him suggesting he will leave the club after this season, entered the penalty area and put 1-0 past goalkeeper Bobby Allain.
The goal was Edvardsen’s 12th of the season, a number which makes him the second-best goal scorer in the league so far. Edvardsen chose to celebrate in front of the ÖSK fans, who responded by throwing various objects at the forward.
Degerfors were the better team in the first half, and shortly after Edvardsen’s goal, the visitors’ lead increased. Midfielder Christos Gravius won the ball outside the penalty area and played it to Abdelrahman Saidi. The latter fired a shot which was deflected by Nasiru Moro and went in.
Before halftime, the derby feelings heated between the players and both Benjamin Hjertstrand and Richard Friday managed to get into the books with two poor challenges on Degerfors players.
At 2-0 down at halftime the home team were booed by the disappointed home crowd as they walked to the locker room.
Örebro’s new coach Marcus Lantz made one change at halftime, replacing centre half Michael Almebäck with young winger Jake Larsson. It played out well, as Örebro did better in the second half. The hosts created several of fine chances to reduce the score. But so did Degerfors and Edvardsen was very close to getting a brace. He spurned a 1-on-1 chance to put the match beyond doubt, with the goalkeeper saving his effort.
In the other end, with 30 minutes left to play, ÖSK had two great opportunities to find the net. But Tottenham loanee Alfie Whiteman stood in the way with two qualified saves.
First, he managed to get his hands on a Johan Mårtensson shot and shortly after he saved Nasiru Moro’s header. The goalkeeper got the Man of the Match award after the game.
Whiteman didn’t get to keep his clean sheet though, as Örebro found a way back into the game. While Degerfors sat on the back, Agon Mehmeti brought belief to the home fans when his shot hit top corner in stoppage time. Even though Örebro put pressure on the visitors, they didn’t come closer than that.
The 2-1 victory for Degerfors lifts them past both Halmstad and Mjällby in the table. Shortly after the final whistle, Degerfors players celebrated with the travelling fans, who sang “hate, hate, hate, Örebro”.
For ÖSK, the situation is becoming increasingly worrying in the Allsvenskan. With six fixtures left to play, Örebro have ten points to make up to safety.