Oslo-born US international Mikkel Diskerud has four goals and five assists for Stabæk this season.
Courtesy of Stabæk IF

American Exports: Diskerud has big US plans

AMSTERDAM – Fresh from helping his team win for the second time in three away matches, Stabæk playmaker Mikkel Diskerud says the Norwegian club will now get back to solving their perplexing woes at home at Telenor Arena.

Sunday's win at Kongsvinger has pulled the team's road record up to break-even, but they've dropped four of their last five league matches as hosts to fall a game below .500 at home.

These stats have the 19-year-old US Under-20 midfielder and his Blue mates straggling in 11th place and searching for answers heading into Sunday's visit from fourth-place Aalesund FK.

"Even our coach has a problem finding answers to that question," Diskerud told MLSsoccer.com. "We haven't really been struggling – or at least not enough. We have possessed the ball, played with confidence, won most game stats, yet lost.

"We have players here that currently are excelling when they are playing for their national teams. Big wins over Portugal and France for Norway lately, yet as a team, we are losing tight matches in our home arena."

Diskerud reports the supporters have largely been pointing the finger at manager Jan Jönsson, who will leave for Norwegian power Rosenborg at season's end.

"[They] blame our coach, implying that his focus and devotion aren't with us anymore," said Diskerud. "Most important for me is that we again earn the loyalty from our fans. Coach Jönsson has altogether been a great coach for the club."

Despite the team's slump, the young American has been in fine form of late and is now ranked among Norwegian paper VG's top 50 players of the season. As one might expect, the personal success is not quite enough.

"I have been getting rather good ratings in those match reports, but this can't be enjoyed unless we manage to win these matches," said Diskerud, who has racked up four goals and five assists in 25 games this term. "Something isn't right. But we should fix it easily, and best by not looking back."

Proving that he hasn't let the struggles make him too tense, Diskerud cuts up a little when asked how he feels his game has grown this season, his first as a regular starter.

"By an inch or so," cracks Diskerud, who has now crossed the 6-foot tall mark.

But what about his next call-up to the US kit? The Oslo-born midfielder also had a quick answer when asked when he expects to build on his three caps for the US U-20s: "The October friendlies in the US against Poland or Colombia."

In case you missed those high ambitions, those would be senior national-team games. Sounds like Diskerud has his own answers.