Thursday 2nd June 2016 ko 19.15
Division 4 Mellersta Stockholm
INGARÖ IF 2 (Asplund 41 Eriksson 76)
HALLONBERGENS IF 1 (Yebio 76)
For a city as beautiful as Stockholm the bus station at Slussen T-Bana (metro) station is an unlovely place, a place of stained concrete and tired yellow lights. However, the buses to the far-flung parts of the Stockholm archipelago are included on the SL “Access” card, and are punctual and regular from there, so a group of 6 British people stood in a bus battling the rush hour traffic heading for a rather deserted looking island to the east of Sweden’s capital.
The bus stopped in Brunn, a small town with a petrol station, a small supermarket, and very little else. Ingarö is a peaceful island, parts were used for the filming of the adaptation of Stieg Larsson’s “Girl with the Dragon Tattoo” starring Daniel Craig, and Sweden’s first nudist beach was established here.
The first issue you’ll have here is working out how exactly to get back to Slussen, as the last bus there leaves Brunn just after 5pm! Fortunately the people at Ingarö IF were both friendly, generous and helpful. They interogated the timetables and advised us to take a bus to Gustavsberg Centrum, stop at Värmdö marknad, cross the road and pick up any one of a slew of buses heading back to Slussen. They then were kind enough to offer us coffee and copies of the team line-ups.
No foreign visitor should ever take a club’s hospitality for granted, and I’ve never visited a lower-level Swedish club that wasn’t welcoming, but I always end up hoping that when a Swedish visitor visits a British club, that hospitality will be reciprocated.
Surprisingly the game didn’t place in the main athletics stadium on the 3G pitch, Swedish football does tend to use an artificial surface if the choice exists. The game took place behind on grass, a running track’s length away from the clubhouse and changing rooms. It was relaxing to sit on a grass bank, with the bleachers opposite, and others found their own vantage points!
You wouldn’t have guessed that Ingarö were winless and bottom. Maybe Hallonbergens underestimated them a little, but captain Anders Asplund led by example. He powered home a header from a corner just before half time. The second half was a dull affair punctuated by two moments of brilliance in the 76th minute. Firstly Semir Yebio, danced through the Ingarö defence before slamming home, then virtually straight after the kick-off Emil Ericksson rifled home from an almost-impossible angle.
It was a morale-boosting victory for Ingarö, and as I write I note that they won their next game too! Eventually we caught our buses back to Stockholm just in time to catch the beautiful sunset over Gamla Stan. It was a final chance to slow down and relax, for Friday would bring the 10th Swedish Hop.