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Archive for May, 2011

Honours even as ten-man Långholmen frustrate league leaders

Sunday, May 15th, 2011

Storm clouds were gathered over Träkvistavallen before this eagerly anticipated clash. The league leaders Ekerö IK have taken maximum points in 2011 and are yet to concede a goal – so the Stripes expected a tough game; but gave as good as they got to claim a point in a hard fought 0-0.

The first period was a rather scrappy affair. The teams circled each other like prizefighters feeling each other out for weaknesses. The stripes struggled to find the fluidity in their passing game but still managed to create chances over the top of the Ekerö defence. Twice the long diagonal ball beat the offside trap but both times the keeper was quick off his line to smother the danger.

Ekerö themselves had come to play, and they had the ball in the net once only for it to be disallowed for offside. Other than that though they rarely threatened as the Stripes defence calmly went about their business.

The second half had more bite to it; the tempo and temperature went up as both teams wrestled for the upper hand. The stripes had their best period of the match, forcing mistakes and looking dangerous on the counter. Långholmen were unlucky not to create more with Ekerö on the back foot. The referee forced to dig into his pocket following a sequence of cynical fouls as the home team broke up the attacks. Chances were few and far between and Ekerö came closest to breaking the deadlock when a shot from distance was deflected onto the post.

The turning point came after 70 minutes. The Ekerö #9, who had been making a nuisance of himself, manhandled Billy Harkness to the floor just as the stripes captain found himself goal side and in a dangerous position. It was a simple yellow card for the Ekerö man, but after a bit of handbags, the linesman got involved and between them they decided that Paul Sullivan had also sinned. It was his second yellow so he had to go and from then on the Stripes had to survive with 10 men.

With their backs to the wall, Långolmen did well to hang on. Ekerö made a couple of chances and will probably think that they should have made the extra man count; but the Stripes held their shape very well and defended willfully from front to back.

So an entertaining game ended goalless between two teams that both have promotion ambitions. The return fixture will be huge and the Stripes look forward to entertaining their black and white rivals on the 3rd of September.

LFC Squad:

Kelly (GK); Thorell (LB), Mcclelland (D), Sund (D), Phillips (RB), Burris (CM) Harkness© (CM), Larsson (CM), Baydi (LM), Allen (RM), Kenny (CF). Subs: O’Sullivan (30), Sullivan (30), Flavio (35)

MOTM – Erik Thorell. Composed and committed; A complete performance.

Ref Watch – The young man managed the game well but the sending off rather spoiled things 3/5.

Långholmen FC’s next league game of the season is on Saturday 21st May at Essinge IP against Vasasällskapet FK – KO 14:00

Hope to see you there.


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Magic Långholmen dump favourites Enskede IK out of the cup

Saturday, May 14th, 2011

Billed as the highest profile game in their illustrious history, Långholmen delivered a stellar second half performance to beat highflying Enskede at Kärrtorps IP. The stripes were staring down the barrel at 2-4, but turned things around with a sensational fight back that stunned the visitors; before knocking them out on penalties.

In fact, the match was book-ended by penalty kicks since the handicap system in the Stockholm cup granted LFC two freebees at the start of the match. Captain Harkness and the resurgent Kenny both confidently dispatched their bonuses to give the stripes a 2-0 advantage without a second on the clock; for a bizarre game that turned up 12 penalties in total, this was a sign of things to come.

You would have won a lot of money betting on a Långholmen victory in this one, and Enskede showed everyone exactly why by dominating the first half with a clinical display of controlled possession, power and pace. They had dangerous players all over the park, putting on a master class of one and two touch football that surely impressed any neutral. The Stripes tactic to try and contain the game lasted about 25 minutes before a lucky break in midfield caught too many LFC players ahead of the ball. Enskede switched play, and after a sublime first touch their striker burst through to cut the lead to 2-1.

From then on it seemed like the writing was on the wall for Långholmen who were always on the defensive against the league 2 leaders. By pressing high up the pitch they forced a couple of defensive errors and ruthlessly punished the Stripes to lead 2-3 at half time. And it could have been worse; the visitors missing a penalty of their own after keeper Kelly was adjudged to have flattened the number 15 with a late challenge.

People talk a lot about the Långholmen spirit – a dizzy combination of pride, passion and bloody mindedness that is an integral part of this clubs DNA. Even after going 2-4 down shortly after the break the lads never stopped believing that they could get something out of the game. They never stopped talking; never stopped fighting and nobody went missing in the face of adversity.

When Flavio picked up the ball just inside his own half and set off down the right, few watching could have imagined what the next 30 minutes had in store. That languid running style (a signature so easy on the eye) carried him to the edge of the box, before he dropped a shoulder and ghosted past a couple of defenders to hit the byline and put in a vicious cross. A hapless defender stuck out an arm and it was another spot kick. Up stepped Harkness; bang. 3-4 and the comeback had begun.

The first rule of street fighting is never taking your eyes off your opponent, and Enskede had just blinked. The words “no respect” boomed across the pitch and Långholmen started to win the battle from then on; aggressive and dogged in a blitz defence that took Enskede by surprise and turned the tide of the tie in an instant.

Midfield General Mattias Larsson intercepted a loose pass out of defense just five minutes later, running a line that opened space for himself and others. A perfectly weighted inside pass put a hungry Colm Kenny through on goal and he gobbled up the opportunity to pull the Stripes level 4-4.

But make no mistake; this was a very very good Enskede side. Unbeaten in 2011, and sitting pretty at the top of division 2. It took a couple of smart saves from Kelly to keep parity as the visitors snapped back into life, forcing LFC onto the back foot again, dominating territory and possession. But what happened next will be reconstructed with salt and peppershakers in the Southside for many years to come.

Defending stoutly on the edge of our own box, the ball was cleared to Harkness who found Larsson around the corner. The General charged into space, sliding the ball centrally to Kenny who in turn clipped it first time out wide to Sammba. The boy Baydi held off two defenders, shielding possession really well before checking inside and floating an impossibly good diagonal ball through the eye of a needle to Chris Allen who had sprinted the length of the pitch to meet it. The ball came into Chris at head height and sandwiched between two defenders he bought the ball under his spell with a magic touch on his chest and deftly chipped the keeper to send the stripes players, fans and bench bananas. If Carlsberg did counter attacking goals…

There was still 15 minutes to go.

The lads held on with everything they had; Paul Sullivan and Otis Burris in particular were rocks out there and Andy Mac was probably the best defender on the field. But of course there was a twist left in the tale, and fair play to Enskede, instead of giving up they forced an equalizer from a near post corner; taking the game into a frantic last 5 minutes. Tackles kept flying in; the players battered and exhausted. Half chances came and went at both ends before Frank Worthington Jnr blew his whistle to signal the end of an epic match 5-5; and the start of a cruel penalty contest to decide the result.

In the huddle, stripes keeper Danny Kelly revealed that he had never been in a shootout before so the players gave him some rather hastily constructed and contradictory advice on the finer points of saving pens. The reciprocal of Murphy’s Law suggesting that from this moment onwards he was destined to be the hero. And so it happened. The players put their hands up and the shoot out unfolded something like this:

PENALTY SHOOTOUT (Looking at the goal)

Enskede score RHS. Nice height for the keeper. Danny standing alert, but stationary in the middle of the goal.

Paul Sullivan wanders over and nonchalantly rolls the ball into the bottom left.

Enskede score LHS. Quite central. Danny still standing patiently in the middle of the goal.

Mattias Larsson trusts his technique and miss-hits one high to the left of the keeper; who is nowhere.

–       At this point someone give Danny the message that he should try to save the penalties by diving towards the ball.

Enskede miss RHS. Great save by Danny. Strong arms deflecting the ball down into the ground and over the bar; cue circus clown chorus from the terraces.

Colm Kenny trundles up and completes a hatrick with a bobbler down the middle.

Enskede miss LHS. Blazed over the bar; probably still rising; more circus noises.

Otis Burris steps up and calmly sidefoots the ball into the goal in the manner of a man playing against his 15 month old son; in his living room with a rolled-up sock for a ball.

Langholmen win 9-7 on Penalties.

Glory for Långholmen and jubilant scenes as the players come to terms with what had just happened. A brief moment of clarity followed to shake the hands and clap the fans before more joy and demented sing song celebrations; including a rendition of Happy Birthday for Långholmen legend Robbie Graham. A night to remember for the self-proclaimed club historian and one that will live long in the memory of all the people who were there to witness the Stripes at their best.

Råsunda FC (div 7) wait in the Quarter Finals. Let it rain.

LFC Squad:

Kelly (GK); Karlsson (LB), Mcclelland (D), Ahmed (D), Phillips (RB), Sullivan (CM) Harkness© (CM), Larsson (CM), O’Sullivan (LM), Baydi (RM), Kenny (CF). Subs: Flavio (35), Gralla (60), Burris (35), Allen (30)

MOTM – Danny ‘Packie Bonner’ Kelly. Hero just for one day.

Ref Watch – Mr Worthington was (as always) hard and fair. 5/5.


“One of those matches you really wish all were at to see. Nuts. Great spirit from the Div4 lads. Great goals and a brilliant win to shut the opposition right up. Nice” – Pete Skinner

“Krian Belly and mate; boy did you miss a second half.” – Scot James

“It was like watching Liverpool – Alaves in the UEFA Cup final. Madness!” – Mats Gustavsson

“Långholmen som till 90% består av Engelsmän visade i andra halvlek Brittisk kämpaglöd då man gick från 2-4 till ledning 5-4.” – Enskede IK

“Fantastic character in the second half. Robbie’s shout when we were 4-3 down, ‘no respect’ was spot on.” – Deri Thomas

“I sat on the bus on the way home after the game and could only think of one thing….. Never under estimate the spirit & resolve that is Långholmen FC.” – Neil M Banks

“I’m looking forward to telling my son Danny Wille Otis Ahmed Andy Micha Colm Samba Chris Flavio Mattias Robbie Andy Billy Rodrigo Sewell that I was there!!” – Julian Sewell

Långholmen FC’s next league game of the season is on Sunday 15th May at Träkvistavallen against Ekerö IK. KO 19:00.

Hope to see more of you there for some top of the table fireworks.


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Another win as the Stripes ease past 10-man Skå

Monday, May 9th, 2011

Another blistering Saturday afternoon at Essinge IP, and a first home victory for Långholmen this season as the stripes ran out 1-0 winners. Skå brought some rather exuberant tackling into the first quarter of the game; and their recklessness warranted a red card for a wild lunge on Chris Allen after 15 minutes. Fair play to the visitors, they did not give up but the game was never really in doubt after that and in reality the stripes could and should have scored more.

The first half was again impressive from LFC, they dominated possession, passed and moved, and looked dangerous every time they held the ball in opposition territory. Chris Allen continued where he left off last weekend with another strong performance and the triangulation play of Burris, Larsson and Harkness is starting to woo the fans.

Indeed, it was a fine flowing move from inside their own half that produced the goal. Kenny and Harkness exchanging passes before threading O’Sullivan through the inside left channel. He unselfishly squared the ball back to the galloping Kenny who rolled the ball into an empty net. Simple.

The stripes were well on top but did not quite hit their stride in the second half, and the longer the second goal eluded them, the more Skå started to believe that they might get something out of the game. They had a little spell with some dangerous set pieces, and even had the ball in the net at one point only for the ref to correctly rule it out for a mindless shove on Mcclelland. The LFC rearguard was rock solid with Sund particularly impressive considering his tender years; while Phillips rolled back the years with a display of timeless composure.

The linesman on the other hand had clearly left his golden retriever at home and made a string of incorrect offside decisions that frustrated the fans and players alike. And when the Stripes did carve out some clear-cut chances, the Skå keeper made a handful of very smart saves to keep his team in the game.

A solid performance at home, a clean sheet and back-to-back victories will please the Långholmen faithful as they start to climb up the table. Next week, a very tasty clash with rivals Ekerö who are sitting pretty at the top of the league.

LFC Squad:

Kelly (GK); Thorell (LB), Mcclelland (D), Sund (D), Phillips (RB), Burris (CM) Harkness© (CM), Larsson (CM), O’Sullivan(LM), Allen (RM), Kenny (CF). Subs: Baydi (30), Flavio (35), Gralla (60), Graham

MOTM – Vilhelm Sund. Head and shoulders above the rest.

Ref Watch – The refo was excellent. The lino got out of bed the wrong side. 4/5.

Långholmen FC’s next league game of the season is on Sunday 15th May at Träkvistavallen against Ekerö IK. KO 19:00.

Hope to see you there.


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LFC Player Profile: Chris Allen

Tuesday, May 3rd, 2011

Full Name: Christopher Allen

Age: 23

Seasons with club including current: 4

Swedish speaking skills: “Jag kan lite svenska”

Position: 1. Wing Forward 2. Auxiliary Goalkeeper

Joined Långholmen midseason in 2008 at a tricky time for the club, Långholmen were lingering at the wrong end of the table and had just lost their manager; however a new management team and the signings of Allen and Kenny saw the club rise up the table and gave the fans a glimpse of what was in store for 2009.

2009 was obviously a historic year for Långholmen, the club won the division 4 title and were promoted to the full Swedish league system for the first time since it’s inception. Chris Allen’s influence that season cannot be overstated, playing from the right wing he finished the season as the club’s top scorer, even breaking his nose for the cause with a courageous goalscoring header vs Reymersholm in the last game of the season. Allen capped off a wonderful season by being named manager’s player of the year.

Despite staring in Långholmen’s league win in 2009 Allen toiled in 2010, a niggling ankle injury early season took it’s toll and then a long term injury to first choice goalkeeper Edwin Bergquist meant that Allen spent much of the season in and out of goal. Allen is an accomplised goalkeeper, his childhood position, and he excelled there at times last season, but goals are what this player is all about and a fine goalscoring performance in League Round 3 bodes well for the remainder of 2011.

Question and Answer with Chris Allen:

Q: If you were stranded a desert island what three things would you want to have with you and why?


A football

Magazines (he says with a cheeky wink)

A fishing net

Q: Favourite Movie

A: Slumdog Millionaire

Q: What is your favourite thing to do outside of football?

A: Spend time with friends and playing on my PS3 (FIFA usually)

Q: Best place you have visited in the wonderful world of ours?

A: Italy or Japan

Our resident wild child will be asked to give a quick summary to describe each player, here are his thoughts on Chrissy Allen:

Chris ‘d kid’ Allen, works in a pre-school where he can learn

as much as he can from the kids around him.

Wants to be a fireman when he grows up!”

Colm Kenny

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Stripes bounce back in style to thrash local rivals.

Monday, May 2nd, 2011

May 1st and LFC did not disappoint when they put on a razor sharp demonstration of attacking football to make ten man Reymersholms labour down at the Zink.

There was a blistering start to the match as Brazilian manager Rodrigo Pinto sent out a team desperate to prove themselves and put right the errors of the week before. The stripes midfield dominated possession and territory, and carved out a handful of good chances in the first ten minutes.

Baydi had a goal disallowed after a marginal offside decision went against the Stripes and Chris Allen was a constant threat; getting behind the Reymers defence and looking dangerous whenever he was on the ball. A goal was in the post, and Allen bagged it after a delightful first touch and composed finish. 1-0 to LFC and the Stripes were on the march.

Wave after wave of Långholmen attack followed as the black and whites pushed for the vital second goal. Burris holding in midfield gave Larsson and Harkness the freedom to express themselves and it almost paid off in emphatic style as Billy Whizz combined brilliantly with Chris Allen to go through on goal – but his shot flashed just wide of the target.

Colm Kenny again worked his socks off up front and after narrowly missing one golden chance, he went clean through the middle of the Reymersholms defence only to get tackled to the ground by one of the floundering defenders. The ref dished out the inevitable red card and the home side was reduced to 10 men with more than half the game still to go.

You might have thought that this would be the end of the Reymers resistance, but they fought back gamely in a little spell before the break to and drag themselves level. A vicious drive from the edge of the box beat an unsighted Kelly in the stripes goal and the game was poised 1-1 at half time.

The Stripes had been the better side and they continued to control the game in the second half, moving the ball around and making the most of their man advantage. The writing was on the wall for the home side and when O’Sullivan reacted quickest at a corner, his chip to the back post was firmly met by the head of Sammba Sowe. 1-2 and the Stripes were in the driving seat again.

Reymers offered little resistance after that, and despite a host of chances and near misses the game was only put safe in the final ten minutes; O’Sullivan picking the keepers pocket to coolly slot into an empty net.

The final whistle was met with generous applause from both sets of fans, who enjoyed the contest and the touchline banter. And the Stripes will be feeling vindicated after another strong performance was rewarded with three points which gives them something to build on when they host Skå next Saturday.

LFC Squad:

Kelly (GK); Thorell (LB), Ahmed (D), Sund (D), Phillips (RB), Burris (CM) Harkness© (CM), Larsson (CM), Baydi (LM), Allen (RM), Kenny (CF). Subs: O’Sullivan (30), Karlsson (45), Santini (70), Graham (75)

MOTM – Chris Allen. So good they named him twice.

Ref Watch – Elite performance from the officials 5/5.

Långholmen FC’s next league game of the season is on Saturday 7th May at Essinge IP against Skå IK – KO 14:00.

Hope to see you there.


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