Posted by: Christian Wulff | March 15, 2013

#NorwegianFootballinEnglish Tippeligaen Predictions 2013

Last year this blog presented the first ever #NorwegianfootballinEnglish Tippeligaen predictions, and with that snappy hashtag it was no wonder literally tens of people viewed the crystal ball musings of a curious group of people afflicted by the need to tweet about Norwegian football in, well, English. That brave, inaugural group of four have this year doubled to eight, all now having to endure a excruciating wait until the 2nd annual AHBMCAs are decided in November. 

The combined predictions of all these Norwegian football hipsters will hopefully give some indication on what to expect from Tippeligaen this season, but let me first introduce them and their tips for the upcoming year.

Paul Gundersen’s (@Gundo10) twitter avatar is Ole Gunnar Solskjær, neatly encapsulating his two main football passions; Norway and Manchester United. However, it has not stopped him from predicting that Solskjær won’t lead Molde to their third straight league championship this season. Ben Cullimore’s pedigree as a Tippeligaen predictor is impeccable, having come third in the AHBMCAs last year. He runs @thenorsenetwork which covers football throughout the Nordic countries, in addition to writing a blog on Tippeligaen for @bpfootball. Ben can also be shouted at through his personal Twitter account, @bencullimore.

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Brendan Husebø (@BrendanHusebo) puts his very extensive and detailed knowledge of several leagues to very good use on Twitter, but his one true football love will always be Brann and Tippeligaen. Having faith enough in Molde to predict another successful defence of their title, his fourth place tip for Brann is surprisingly not the highest prediction for the team from Bergen. That belongs to Chris Eastwood, the man behind the account @norskfotball, solely dedicated to Norwegian football. He has Brann in 3rd place, while his 5th place prediction for Strømsgodset is their lowest this year.

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James Morgan (@FRfotballJamesM) is the Tippeligaen analyst for @FootballRadar, a website that produces estimates of football matches by using statistical data modelling. James has also estimated that Molde will fall to third place this season. The same is also predicted by Rob Brown (@robbro7). When he doesn’t fawn over Sergio Busquets on Twitter, he usually writes on all thing football for @Sabotage Times and The Carvalho Peninsula.

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The Twitter bio of Rhodri Lewis (@rhodrijava) is certainly the only one that includes the sentence ‘Tweets am bel-droed Norwyeg ac eraill’. Wales’ biggest Norwegian football enthusiast is alone in predicting that Strømsgodset will go one better than last year and lift their first league trophy since 1970.  That only leaves yours truly (@ahellofabeating), the inaugural winner of the AHBMCAs, lest we forget. Catering to the incredible demand for Norwegian football in Scotland, I will very much try to honour my commitment to the lovely people at @ stvsport for a weekly blog on Tippeligaen throughout this season, after covering the last ten rounds for them last year.

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By calculating the league positions for each team the combined wisdom of the #NorwegianfootballinEnglish twitterers is reflected in this final Tippeligaen 2013 table:

                               Capture final2

So the main headline is that Rosenborg will reclaim the league title after two years of Solskjær rule, with Strømsgodset repeating their success of last season by taking another medal.

A clear picture also emerges below the top three contenders. Brann, Vålerenga and Tromsø are predicted to compete for 4th to 6th place, with a jump down to a very close group of four, made up of Viking, Aalesund, Lillestrøm and Haugesund.

Odd Grenland is the odd team out, apparently destined for 11th, while the relegation battle will be fought among Start, Sogndal, Sandnes Ulf, Sarpsborg and Hønefoss. Sarpsborg is awarded 15th place above Hønefoss by account of getting the single highest prediction, Rhodri having them in 11th place.

The biggest discrepancy within the group is in regards to Aalesund. A full 10 places is the difference between Paul and Rhodri’s predictions for Jan Jönsson’s team.  There is also disagreement around the fate of Haugesund and Tromsø, with a difference of 7 and 6 places respectively among the group.

How wrong these predictions actually are we will start to find out from tonight, when Viking host Molde in the first match of the 2013 Tippeligaen season.

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