(Linfield – Bodø/Glimt 1–0) Bodø/Glimt controlled the whole game in Northern Ireland, and it seems that only in attack the Bodøers are in trouble. But minutes before the end, Marius Høibråten gave the home team a premature Christmas present.
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– What are you doing, Høibråten?! No and no, in many ways this shouldn’t have happened, exclaimed VG commentator Vegard Aulstad as Kirk Millar took good care of the gift package from centre-back Høibråten.
Millar beat Nikita Haikin of Bodø/Glimt seven minutes from the end in elegant fashion, and ended up having a hole in a very “tough” match.
– It gets really brutal at the end when what happened, happened. Right now the lead is heavy. I got a bad touch that leads to another bad touch and that leads to their goal, said Høibråten to Avisa Nordland.
– It’s heavy, but at the same time you just need to get up. There’s nothing more to do. We controlled the game, but not sharp enough in the last third. But it’s not over even if you have a brain haemorrhage, he adds.
1 of 6Photo: Liam McBurney / Pa . Photo
– It’s hard to stand in it, but you have to let it go as best you can, it’s also good to have a match in Aspmyra in a week. It is human to make mistakes. It’s not the first time people have made mistakes, the goalkeeper told the club Youtube channel.
Continuing favorites Bodø/Glimt, without Amahl Pellegrino from the start, dominated the field play against Linfield, but big chances missed on a warm Tuesday night in Northern Ireland.
– If we played 40 hours we wouldn’t be able to score, coach Glimt Kjetil Knutsen told Nordland Newspaper.
Tonight’s defeat doesn’t mean Norway are out of Champions League qualification. On Wednesday next week, the game will again be played at Aspmyra, but Linfield will then have a one-goal advantage that Glimt should include in the summary.
We didn’t get to see the Glimt attack we used to do from last season. This may have something to do with their tight fixture schedule or that aces Pellegrino and Victor Boniface warmed the bench from the start.
Pellegrino, who came on alongside Boniface with 25 minutes left to play, didn’t spend long on the pitch before finishing on the line, but that was all it took. The Linfield defense not only bothered Pellegrino, but they were constantly close to Bodø/Glimt’s men on almost every shot attempt.
This is how it was in the first half too:
Northern Ireland got the picture of the match in the groove they wanted. They were comfortable lying low on the pitch and letting Norway roll the ball. Bodø/Glimt did everything right in the first and second half of the court, but there were a lot of misplaced passes in the final third.
The home team was thus able to slow down the tempo on many occasions. At the same time, they struggle at certain transitions, and show Glimt’s defense that they can’t relax hero from.
It was a somewhat more aggressive Bodø/Glimt team that came on to the pitch after the break, but there was a long time between good chances.
Pellegrino came on with the away side’s biggest chance when his finish was saved on the line, but there weren’t many chances again despite Knutsen turning his star man on.
It also didn’t help much when Høibråten gave Millar the ball, and then suddenly it became a rather difficult starting point for Bodøværnings for the return match.
Tuesday’s defeat meant Bodø/Glimt lost twice straight in the Champions League qualifiers. Last week Glimt lost 1-3 to Klaksvik, but were saved by a 3-0 win at home the week before.
Usually, Linfield has struggled against Norwegian teams in the European Cup:
If Bodø/Glimt qualify after the doubles match against Linfield, then residents of Bod have secured at least one group stage in the Conference League in the fall. The home game against Linfield will be played next Wednesday, and the match will be broadcast on VG+ Sport.
The overall winner will face either Zalgiris or Malmö in the third of the four qualifying rounds. Malmö lost in the first match 0-1 left when Jo Inge Berget played the whole game.
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