LSK have been one of the worst, if not the worst side in the league since the resumption of the Tippeligaen following the summer break. Most of their performances have been dire, with the only positive result being a 2-0 win against Godset in their previous home match. For some reason, they came back from the break really sluggish with issues all over the field. Matters weren't helped by constant transfer speculation and the departure of Fred Friday to AZ Alkmaar was a real blow. LSK have replaced him with Tomas Malec who made his debut last weekend. For this match, experienced old defender Frode Kippe is injured, but at 38 years old years old that might not be a bad thing facing a pacey Rosenborg offense. The aforementioned 2-0 win against Stromsgodset was the only time in their last eight games that Lillestrom managed to keep a clean sheet. They haven't been particularly assured at the back all season. This is a big game and maybe they could raise their level due to higher motivation. But if the same sort of recent general performances continue then Rosenborg could hand them quite a beating.
Of course, a lot will depend exactly what sort of mood Rosenborg are in. On Tuesday night they suffered a gut wrenching defeat in the CL qualifying round away against Cypriot side APOEL. For most of the two legs they were in control but a late goal started a barrage and they eventually lost 0-3 on the night. Several players were in tears and it's the sort of defeat which might take some time to get over. Of course, additional problems were playing in a hot country so both mental and physical fatigue could play a part. RBK could easily bounce back but it’s not as easy when you’ve suffered an emotional defeat. The champions are six points clear at the top of the table, with a game in hand and you might as well hand them the gold medal now. Nobody is going to catch them so it’s not as if they have any pressure on their shoulders. Quite what sort of XI will be fielded here I’m not sure. The coach has shown and tendency to protect players in recent weeks and it’s possible a few might be rested to the bench again.
Conclusion & betting analysis
Under normal circumstances I’d predict Rosenborg to tear Lillestrom a new arsehole here. Well…...maybe not to that extreme but claim a fairly comfortable victory at least! The simple fact is that LSK have been playing pretty poorly of late and it’d be difficult to see them living with the champions, if RBK are ‘in the mood’ But there's every chance the visitors could be a bit flat. Lillestrom were fortunate enough to catch Stromsgodset cold after a European match when they beat them here 2-0 last time out. Once again, they face a side on the back of a potential European hangover but it’ll be more difficult this time around. RBK have won the last seven H2H meetings between the two teams and they’ve totally owned Lillestrom in recent years. The goal line is set at 3.0, but it’s worth noting that a whopping 7 out of 8 RBK away games have ended under 2.5 this season! The visitors on a -0.75 handicap could look a big price come the end of this match but there are enough doubts for me to swerve them. I’ll give this one a miss due to their potential European hangover.
Recommended bet: None