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Saturday 9th June 2018 ko 16.00

Division 5 Sydöstra Skåne

ANDERSLÖVS BoIK 3 (Jonsson 6og Wikström 71 86)

SKEGRIE 2 (Melander 12 Larsson 51)

Att 114

Entry & Programme 40 sek

The Swedish Hop’s £230 cost included two nights bed and breakfast in Trelleborg, coach travel including to and from Kastrup Airport, tolls on the Øresund Bridge, and all entry fees and programmes for the games.

If we thought that Klågerup had been amazing, then I sat on the coach heading towards our final destination of the day wondering how on earth Anderslöv could possibly live up to what had happened before? The coach pulled into a car park behind a local school and driver Jörgen laughed. I leaned forward and laughed too…

It was a sandwich board advertising the game, but it was the the section underneath that said “Welcome British Groundhoppers” that made us smile, it’s not often we’re welcomed like that! It was impressive on another level, how many times are “English” and “British” confused abroad? With 2 Scots in the party the distinction was appreciated!

Anderslöv is a pretty as a picture village, with the Lutherian church of St Andor (Andrew) dominating the skyline. However the village is most famous for a rather unfortunate incident in 2012. A street of new houses had been built but any blonde residents soon found their hair turned green. It turned out the reason was the houses’ showers, or rather the copper pipes the water was flowing through. The solution to the problem earned scientist Johan Pettersson the Nobel Prize for Chemistry.

The welcome from the club was touching with the gift of a shirt appreciated, and the chance to meet with the club’s officials and the chance to hear a little of the club’s history. On a hot day the beers were appreciated, but since rules and regulations meant that alcohol isn’t allowed outside it was surprising how many British hoppers were seen enjoying a cup of “Diet Coke!”

Just one question does persist though, why does this part of Skåne seem to like Derby County so much? Last year we were thoroughly charmed by Trelleborg mayor Torbjörn Karlsson who is a Rams fan, and we were introduced to club official Christer Nilsson who is also a Derby fan. Now I’d expect it of Manchester United.. but Derby??

It was lovely to see Mayor Karlsson at the game which saw another link with last year’s hop, Skegrie. Their beautiful home was one of the easiest I’ve photographed, but this one was arguably the most difficult. There is of course nothing remotely wrong here, but the ground is right next door to an outdoor swimming pool, so some creative depth-of-field settings were needed at times!

Away from the wonderful hospitality there was the small matter of a massive local derby to consider. One of our party had more reason than the rest to concentrate on the game. The club has asked for a volunteer to award the man of the match, so as the only lady amongst us Robyn was very quickly volunteered!! We’d been told to expect a fiesty game which was got, but what we got what was easily the best game of the hop. Either side could have won it, and we know Skegrie think they should have, we met a couple of their players in the pub back in Trelleborg later on!

The afternoon though belonged to Anderslöv and so did the evening. We were invited by the club to the Anderslövs Gästgivaregård, a hotel in the centre of the village for a buffet meal. There a big screen had been set up so we could watch the Sweden vs Peru game as we ate, then afterwards sat in the garden talking football over a beer or ten. It was a magical evening, and thanks to all at Anderslövs BoIK for inviting us, and I’m pleased to announce that no cases of green hair were reported. That said one or two of of the party haven’t got hair to turn any colour!

We headed back to Trelleborg, enjoying the most glorious sunset before most of us headed over to our favourite pub, the Tre Lykktor for a beer or ten. We arrived at the bar and ordered the normal 16 bottles of Mariestads. The response was priceless.

“You can’t. You lot drank our entire stock last night!”

I know it’s wrong but I felt just a little bit proud at that moment, even if the substitute beers weren’t quite as good as the normal Mariestads. It reflected on a day that any other hop would have wanted to contain 3 games, but worked wonderfully with only 2. The reason was that the day and this hop has become so more than just football.

I’ll have a task I’m sure to sell that to hardened groundhoppers in the years to come, so the 3 game format will have to be the ideal. But, there is so more to Sweden than just football, and I think the Swedish Hop is slowly evolving to reflect that.