American Exports: Conor O'Brien scores winner for Champions League-bound Nordsjaelland
AMSTERDAM – The Danish Superliga finished up the season on Monday, with FC Nordsjælland midfielder Conor O'Brien netting the 1-0 winner over Esbjerg.
In the 33rd minute, the Long Island, N.Y., native (above) collected a poor clearance from away netminder Lukas Hradecky and promptly buried his first Wild Tigers goal from distance. The outgoing champs finished a clear second place to clinch their Champions league return.
Elsewhere, Charlie Davies worked 89 minutes as Randers FC secured third place and the Europa League invite that comes with it despite conceding in stoppage time of a 2-2 draw at Aalborg BK. It was Davies' set-up pass for Jonas Kamper that led to the 77th-minute own-goal that temporarily put the Horses ahead.
Clarence Goodson went the distance in defense in Brøndby's survival-clinching 1-0 victory that also relegated hosts AC Horsens. Though the US international lost his place and captaincy earlier in the season, the Lads from the Western Outskirts went 3-1-10 in his last 14 starts as they rallied to avoid the axe.
Across the water in Sweden, Alejandro Bedoya and Helsingborg maintained their Allsvenskan lead with a 2-1 decision over visiting defending champions Elfsborg. The playmaker put two shots on frame and drew a late yellow card as the hosts won for the sixth time in a row.
Next door in Norway's Tippeligaen, Steve Clark posted consecutive shutouts for the first time in a year as Hønefoss edged guests Lillestrøm 1-0. The netminder logged four saves to help the home side jump three spots to ninth.
Mikkel Diskerud went 63 lukewarm minutes in second-place Rosenborg's 0-0 home draw with defending champs Molde FK. The midfielder had a golden chance to score in the opening moments, only to have his breakaway shot tipped around the woodwork.