For the first time in their short 10 year history, international side Långholmen FC have reached a historic stage of the Swedish Cup, and now face a draw against one of the top 32 teams in the country.
Following their emphatic 1-4 victory against Enhörna in the previous round, Långholmen are now guaranteed a home fixture against an Allsvenskan or Superettan team, with the match scheduled to be played on the 18th ,19th or 20th of August in Stockholm.
The size of the task ahead is huge but the mighty Stripes are not phased by the challenge. “This is what we’ve been working towards for ten years” said Mats Gustavsson, Chairman of LFC. “We are ambitious, we set ourselves high standards, and in many ways this high profile opportunity is a reflection of all the hard work put into the club by a dedicated band of members and supporters.”
As the largest English speaking football club in Stockholm, LFC pride themselves on offering a wide range of football for all. The elite team has been on a superb run over recent years, being promoted successively through the football league from division 8 in 2003, to division 3 in 2010. Last years run to the final of the Stockholm Cup assured them of their place in the Swedish National Cup, and now they are preparing to meet the likes of AIK, Elfsborg and Malmö FF.
“It is obviously a great achievement for the football club and a challenge we are relishing” enthused Stuart Lascelles, Manager of the Långholmen 1st Team. “Playing against one of the best teams in the country is a hugely motivating experience for everyone at the club, and we aim to give a good account of ourselves. We relish being the underdog, the pressure is off us and we are really looking forward to testing ourselves against a top side – whoever that may be.”
The draw for the next round is on the 6th August 2012, and the preparations have already begun in earnest for a club approaching the biggest date in their history. “The logistics of an event like this are unheard of for a club as small as us. From security staff and stewards to catering, merchandising and medical staff, we need to have the foundations in place well in advance of the event itself” explained Gustavsson. “All volunteers and contributions are welcome. We’re hoping to pull in a broad range of resources and support from the international community; we’re a family club on a mission to make history.”
The Swedish Cup will be featured on SVT “Fotbollskväll” on August 20th.