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Viking FK

Viking FK is a football (soccer) club from Norway.

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About Viking FK

Viking Fotballklubb (most often called Viking, sometimes Viking Stavanger internationally) is a Norway football (soccer) club from the city of Stavanger. The club was founded in 1899. It is one of the most successful clubs in Norwegian football, having won 8 Norwegian Premier League titles, most recently in 1991, and 5 domestic Norwegian Cup Champions titles, most recently in 2001. The club has played and won more top-flight league games than any other club, and it has played in the top division since the league was established, except for the years 1966–67 and 1987–88. Notable European successes include knocking Culture of England side Chelsea F.C. out of the UEFA Cup during the 2002–03 season, knocking out Sporting Clube de Portugal from the same tournament in 1999–2000, and qualifying for the group stages of the UEFA Cup 2005-06.


Viking was founded in Stavanger in 1899 and played mainly local games in the early years. From the 1930s, the club established itself at the national level, playing in the 1933 cup final, which it lost to Mjøndalen IF. During the 1930s the club produced several of its best known players, most prominently Reidar Kvammen, who played in Norway national football team's bronze medal winning 1936 Summer Olympics team. His brother Arthur Kvammen was also capped for Norway national football team, while Bernhard Lund later went on to write the club anthem.

After the Second World War, Viking became a dominant side in the 1950s, beating Lillestrøm S.K in the 1953 cup final and Sandefjord Fotball in the 1959 final, as well as the league title in 1958. Long-serving goalkeeper Sverre Andersen was the most prominent player in this generation, while Edgar Falch also earned several caps for Norway national football team. Rolf and Kåre Bjørnsen, Asbjørn Skjærpe and Leif Nicolaysen were other prominent players, while a young Olav Nilsen began his remarkable Viking career in 1959. The club attendance record also stems from 1959, when 18,892 spectators saw Viking beat Odd Grenland 4–0 in the cup semifinal.

While the 1960s was a somewhat quieter decade for Viking, the club returned to dominate Norwegian football in the 1970s. Viking won four straight league titles from 1972 to 1975, as well as the double in 1979. Innovative 1972 manager Kjell Schou Andreassen has been credited for laying the foundation for the success, with his ideas on cooperative behaviour and his revolutionary use of pacey, attacking full backs Sigbjørn Slinning and Anbjørn Ekeland. However, the team had a new manager every year, with Sverre Andersen, Stuart Williams (footballer) and Olav Nilsen leading them to the title in the subsequent years, and Tony Knapp managing the 1979 team. Midfielder Olav Nilsen was also a crucial player on the pitch in the first half of the decade, earning the nickname "Olav Viking", while fellow midfielder Svein Kvia was awarded the Norwegian Player of the Year title on several occasions. Arvid Knutsen, Reidar Goa, Hans Edgar Paulsen, Erik Johannessen, Inge Valen, Johannes Vold, Svein Hammerø, Gunnar Berland and Trygve Johannessen were other key players.

The 1980s started well for the club. Kjell Schou Andreassen returned to guide the club to the league title in 1982. They also finished runners-up in the league in 1981 and 1984, and in the cup in 1984, producing players such as Bjarne Berntsen, Per Henriksen, Erik Thorstvedt, Svein Fjælberg, Nils Ove Hellvik, Tonning Hammer, Isak Arne Refvik, Torbjørn Svendsen, Trygve Johannessen and Gary Goodchild. However, the mid-80s saw the club relegated to the second division, and 1987 was the club's worst season in recent memory as the club fell to 8th position in the Second Division, while local rivals Bryne FK won the cup and neighbouring minnows FK Vidar almost won promotion to the Premier League.

Something had to be done, and the solution was a massive financial gamble which saw Sweden manager Benny Lennartsson and players Kjell Jonevret and Per Holmberg arrive on large salaries. The gamble paid off when charismatic striker Alf Kåre Tveit secured a controversial penalty in the 95th minute against SK Vard Haugesund in the final league game of the 1988 season. Arild Ravndal converted the spot kick to give Viking the victory and secure promotion, dubbed "the miracle in Haugesund". This signalled the start of a new era, and the club won the cup in 1989 and the league in 1991. Lars Gaute Bø, Roger Nilsen, Kent Christiansen, Egil Fjetland, Jan Fjetland, Trond Egil Soltvedt, Mike McCabe and Børre Meinseth were other key players in a young Viking team.

However, many of the young players from the 1991 league winning squad did not manage to live up to their expectations, and the club was almost relegated under new manager Arne Larsen Økland in 1992. Bjarne Berntsen took over as manager in mid-season and secured renewed Premiership status, as well as almost knocking FC Barcelona out of the European Cup. While the club spent most of the 1990s challenging for Premier League medals, it did however never manage to challenge Rosenborg BK for the league championships. The 1990s was also the era of player exports in Norwegian football, and Viking made substantial earnings from the sales of striker Egil Østenstad to Southampton F.C for £900,000 in 1996 and goalkeeper Thomas Myhre to Everton F.C for £800,000 in 1997, among others. Gunnar Aase, Lars Gaute Bø, Magnus Svensson (footballer), Bjarte Lunde Aarsheim, Kenneth Storvik, Roger Nilsen and Ingve Bøe were other key players in this generation.

Benny Lennartson returned in 2000 to take over from Dane Poul Erik Andreasen, and this resulted in two bronze medals, a cup title and a memorable European Cup victory over Chelsea F.C.. In 2003, Kjell Inge Olsen took over as manager, and the club finished fifth in the league.

At the beginning of the 2004 season, the club moved to its new stadium in Jåttåvågen, named Viking Stadion. At the same time, Roy Hodgson took over as manager. The club finished ninth in its first season in the new stadium and fifth in the 2005 campaign. Brede Hangeland, Egil Østenstad, Peter Kopteff and Frode Hansen were notable players in this period. At the end of the season, Roy Hodgson quit his job as Viking coach to take over as Finland national football team manager, and he was replaced by Tom Prahl.

The 2006 season started poorly for Prahl's team and poor soon turned to terrible. With seven matches to go, the once so feared team were situated at the bottom of the table. Something had to be done and the former I.K. Start coach Tom Nordlie was brought in on a three month contract to replace Tom Prahl and save Viking from relegation. Under new leadership, Viking won three of the first four games, jumping to tenth place in the standings, but were then defeated twice in a row to once again fall into the relegation zone. Now lying second from the bottom, it looked like the best the club could hope for was making the play-off spot. The season finale proved to be extraordinary, however, as Viking crushed league runners-up S.K. Brann 5–0 at home to pass both Ham-Kam and Odd Grenland in the standings and ultimately retain their spot in the Premier League. Tom Nordlie was considered the favorite for the manager role after the season, but he chose a move to rivals Lillestrøm instead. On November 22 2006, Viking signed Uwe Rösler (who was replaced by Tom Nordlie in Lillestrøm just one week earlier) as their new manager.

Under Rösler, Viking returned as a top team, and claimed the 3rd spot on the table in 2007. However, the following seasons were less successful, with Viking ending on 6th place in 2008 and 10th in 2009. They were also surprisingly knocked out of the UEFA Cup by Finnish team FC Honka in 2008, and suffered an embarrassing loss against rivals Bryne FK in the domestic cup in 2009. After not living up to the expectations two seasons in a row, Rösler resigned from his position as manager on 18 November 2009.

In early December 2009, after a period of massive speculation in local newspapers, Viking signed Åge Hareide, former manager of the Norwegian national football team, as their new manager.

Colors and badge

The original kit colors in 1899 were all white. This turned out to be problematic at that time; to avoid color bleeding from the red/yellow club badge when cleaning the white shirts, the badge had to be removed from each shirt prior to washing and then re-attached afterwards. The club therefore changed to dark blue, and is now nicknamed after the dark blue color of their shirts.

The club badge is shaped like a flag, and has remained unchanged since the club's formation in 1899. The flag shape is not uncommon for Norwegian football clubs formed during the transition from the 19th to the 20th century; other examples include IK Start and Fredrikstad FK.


League winners

Winners (8): 1958, 1972, 1973, 1974, 1975, 1979, 1982, 1991

Runners up: 1981, 1984

Third place: 1955, 1968, 1971, 1978, 1994, 1996, 2000, 2001, 2007

Cup winners

Winners (5): 1953, 1959, 1979, 1989, 2001

Runners up: 1933, 1947, 1974, 1984, 2000

Famous European runs

- UEFA Cup 1972-73:
- - 1st round: Beat IBV Vestmannaeyar 1–0 on aggregate (1–0 at home, 0–0 away).
- - 2nd round: Beat 1. FC Köln 1–0 at home, lost 9–2 on aggregate.
- UEFA Cup 1982-83:
- - 1st round: Beat Lokomotive Leipzig on away goals, after 1–0 at home and 2–3 away.
- - 2nd round: Lost 1–3 on aggregate to Dundee United F.C. (1–3 at home, 0–0 away).
- UEFA Champions League 1992-93:
- - 1st round: Held FC Barcelona to 0–0 draw at home, lost 0–1 away two weeks earlier.
- UEFA Cup 1999-00:
- - Preliminary round: Beat Principat 18–0 on aggregate.
- - 1st round: Beat Sporting Clube de Portugal 3–1 on aggregate (3–0 at home, 0–1 away).
- - 2nd round: Lost to SV Werder Bremen on away goals (0–0 away, 2–2 at home).
- UEFA Cup 2002-03:
- - 1st round: Beat Chelsea F.C. 5–4 on aggregate, after losing 1–2 away and winning 4–2 at home two weeks later.
- - 2nd round: Lost 4–1 to Celta de Vigo (0–3 away, 1–1 at home).
- UEFA Cup 2005-06:
- - 1st preliminary round: Beat Portadown F.C. 3–1 on aggregate (1–0 at home, 2–1 away).
- - 2nd preliminary round: Beat Rhyl F.C. 3–1 on aggregate (2–1 at home, 1–0 away).
- - 1st round: Beat FK Austria Wien 2–2 on away goals (1–0 at home, 1–2 away)
- - Group stages: Beat AS Monaco FC 1–0 at home, lost 0–2 to Hamburger SV away, drew 2–2 with SK Slavia Praha at home, lost 0–2 to PFC CSKA Sofia away.

Norwegian Youth Cup

- Winners: 1965, 1979, 1995, 2003
- Runners up: 1969, 1970, 1981, 1992, 1996, 1998

Recent history

, August 26, 1999 (UEFA cup)
(Viking won 7–0 in the return leg).

Heaviest defeat

2–11 v FC Lyn Oslo, July 28, 1968

Largest attendance

Stavanger stadion: 18,892 v Odd Grenland, 1959

Viking stadion: 16,600 v SK Brann, 2007

Largest average attendance: 15,846, 2007

Most appearances

- 551 Svein Kvia
- 523 Sigbjørn Slinning
- 501 Erik Johannesen
- 500 Torbjørn Svendsen
- 482 Sverre Andersen
- 431 Thomas Pereira (footballer) (final game was his testimonial match against SK Brann on November 21, 2009)
- 425 Bjarte Lunde Aarsheim
- 414 Olav Nilsen

Top goal scorers

- 202 Reidar Kvammen
- 181 Trygve Johannessen
- 180 William Danielsen
- 176 Arthur Kvammen
- 167 Egil Østenstad
- 146 Åsbjørn Skjærpe
- 124 Håkon Kindervåg

Most capped players

- 62 Olav Nilsen (19 goals)
- 51 Reidar Kvammen (17 goals)
- 42 Sigbjørn Slinning (1 goal)
- 41 Sverre Andersen
- 38 Svein Kvia (3 goals)
- 33 Bjarne Berntsen
- 33 Svein Fjælberg
- 28 Edgar Falch
- 22 Torgeir Torgersen
- 21 Brede Hangeland (73 caps total; 1 goal)
- 20 Erik Thorstvedt (97 caps total)

Players & staff

As of 29 February, 2012

For season transfers, see List of Norwegian football transfers winter 2011–12.

Reserve squad

As of October 19, 2010, according to official Viking website.

Coaching staff

- Allan Gaarde
- Nikolai Stokholm
- Toni Kuivasto
- Hannu Tihinen
- Ríkharður Daðason
- Peter Ijeh
- Gunnar Aase
- Martin Andresen
- Erik Fuglestad

- Brede Hangeland
- Thomas Myhre
- Roger Nilsen
- Frode Olsen
- Egil Østenstad
- Erik Pedersen
- Ragnvald Soma
- Gøran Sørloth
- Erik Thorstvedt
- Magnus Svensson (footballer)

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