Back in 2005 Leicester with Craig Levein as manager did fly all the way to Bodo for a pre-season game. A great evening for Leicester as they hammered Glimt 5-1 with the local newspaper describing it all as a total humiliation. Leicester on the day fielded a young side with a number of fringe players getting minutes. Leicester goalscorers were Mark de Vries and David Connolly with two, Gareth Williams adding up the full tally.
This was of course on TCF’s mind yesterday as Roma came to Bodo with the same recipe. Jose Mourinho had a great dilemma knowing that the game in the weekend v. Napoli being more important, decided to rest his best players, and was really getting a reality check of dimentions, admitting, after the game, that he had totally missed in his team selecton.
Bodo Glimt did shake AC Milan last season with a grand performance at San Siro, but it all became just a scare as it ended in a win for the Italians. This was a very different Glimt team with their three attackers Zinkernagel, Junker and Hauge all sold shortly after and new men were either pushed into team from the bench or brought in from the unknown shadows.
Solbakken and Botheim who hit their highest heights yesterday are both Rosenborg misfits and after spells in grey parts of football they have both blossomed this season under the guidence of super coach Kjetil Knutsen. The way this man and the club are finding their talents makes football fun again as they hit bulls eye in almost every pick and with Solbakken and Botheim you have two young players who has shown great grit as they have at a young age fought back after being left in the shadows at bigger clubs.
The fact that Bodo Glimt did play against Roma without one of their absolute best players, Ulrik Saltnes, makes this result even more impressive, with a former cross country skier at national youth level taking a more important place in the team, Sondre Brunstad Fet, signed from the bench at Norwegian 2nd tier club Aalesund.
The player of greatest importance is with no doubt central midfielder Patrick Berg, 23 years of age, captain of the team and also playing steadily in the Norwegian national team. A special talent showing against Roma that he has the capacity to kill giants. His goal from distance yesterday was one of Youri Tielemans standard and he must have impressed Jose Mourinho with his fantastic display and leadership. Watching Patrick Berg week in and week out over a number of years, this was the day to remember, what a fantastic performance and alongside Botheim and Solbakken being the best players on the field.
Patrick Berg is the son of Orjan Berg and the grandson of Harald Berg, both previous Norwegian internationals with a professional career abroad. Patrick Berg and Ulrik Saltnes are without doubt the two key players at Bodo Glimt, without them Kjetil Knutsen will have to use his special skills to find alternatives, but as we did see against Roma, Saltnes was replaced in the best way possible and if Leicester decides to take a further look at Patrick Berg, instead of trying to hook up Southampton winger Moi, they would be more bold and make a fantastic move.
Patrick Berg has been selected to play for Norway, not often that players from the domestic league gets such a chance as players playing abroad are preferred, believed to be much better and playing at a higher level. After this 6-1 win v. Roma we will probably see names from Bodo Glimt in the Norway selection bowl, with Lode, Bjorkan, Botheim and Berg recently been called up.
Leicester manager Brendan Rodgers might be lucky over the next transfer window, but with the current results the big guys will be sniffing around and to see how Bodo is chasing talent and how they replace their best players and still keeps running in the top of the table with a David budget and with a minor fanbase compared to the bigger clubs in Norwegian football they are a fantastic example to follow in football.
We also see this approach from especially FC Porto and FC Brugge being two others as they tend to be able to sell cleverly and buy with the correct eye. Bringing home domestic titles year in and year out, with the correct attitude and formula for those special changes, cannot see Leicester doing the same as money has been used with major mistakes. About 50% of the signings done over the past four or five seasons has been great mistakes and failures.
Bodo Glimt made the impossible possible as they have managed to keep their momentum after a sensational win of the Norwegian league and instead of saying staying up there is impossible just kept on working brought in players with the best attitude found in place few or no other looks, we all know the way Leicester used to work in the past, finding players that had been thrown out of Manchester United and Manchester City, taking a step down and been signed from places such as Bolton Wanderers, Crewe Alexandria and Chelsea reserves. We all know that Leicester also signed a player been seen as a “too small” at Kilmarnock and later sold for £65million to Man City, so just please keep up the good work instead of throwing out too many millions.
Good luck in the transfer windows coming up as Leicester must defind their DNA, rembering Danny Drinkwater from Man Utd reserves, Riyad Mahrez from Le Havre and Ngolo Kante from Caen. The signing of Shinji Okazaki, from Mainz, was another maginficant deal made.
Patrick Berg from Bodo will probably be available for less than £7million, but they might demand more for such a talent.
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