AIK will host Halmstad on Monday, August 8, at Friends Arena in the 13th round of Allsvenskan. The hosts are unbeaten in their last three and have yet to taste defeat on home turf, where they’ll meet with a side which they defeated in all of their last three meetings. Will the Gnaw manage to keep their streak going?
AIK vs Halmstad
When: Monday, August 8 – 19:00 CEST
Where: Friends Arena in Solna, Sweden
Weather: Mostly cloudy, 14°C
Referee: Kristoffer Karlsson (SWE)
One would think that 14°C temperature with clouds covering the sky is not good weather for the first day of August. However, footballers seem to love this sort of weather, suggesting that we’re in for a real treat at Solna’s Friends Arena.
That is where two giants of Swedish football will meet this evening. Founded in 1891, AIK is one of the most successful Scandinavian clubs with 12 domestic titles, the most recent of which they won in 2018.
Halmstad also has an impressive trophy cabinet with four national championship trophies with their names engraved on them. However, the last time they won the Swedish top flight was in 2000. Since then, the club has gone through a rough patch, ending in the second tier of the Swedish league system in 2017.
They got back to the Allsvenskan this year and are determined to stay there. So far, they’ve been doing alright, but there are some very tough matches ahead of Halmstad. One of those is tonight’s game against AIK.
AIK Is 2nd-Best Home Side in the 2021 Allsvenskan
The Stockholm-based club is playing its home games at the biggest stadium in Scandinavia, Friends Arena. With the support of their fans, AIK have been brilliant on their turf, winning five and drawing two home games this season. They remain one of only four teams in the league that are still without a home loss in 2021.
What’s equally as impressive is that AIK’s goal difference at home is 12-4 this season. They also have a pretty good head-to-head record against Halmstad at Friends Arena, although it’s been a while since these two sides last met in Solna.
In fact, the most recent AIK vs Halmstad duel that took place in Solna happened in 2018, when the two played a cup game. The hosts won by 3-1, which came as no surprise. After all, three years ago, Halmstad were competing in the second division.
No Defeats for Halmstad in Almost Three Months
Halmstad’s main goal for the 2021 season is to stay above the relegation zone. It seems that they’re on the right track, although the season is still in its early stages. After 12 rounds, they have 15 points and are in the #10 place.
The bad news is that there are two teams behind them with the same number of points. There’s also one team with two points fewer. All of those teams could leapfrog Halmstad if they lost to AIK tonight. Halmstad are also not too far from the #14 spot (the position that leads to the relegation playoffs), currently occupied by Mjallby with 10 points.
On the bright side for Halmstad, they’re in pretty good form, with no losses since May 8. What’s their secret? The Halmstad manager Magnus Haglund likes playing a defensive-minded 4-4-2 tactic, which seems to be working for this team.
So far, they’ve conceded only 10 goals, which is better than all other teams in the league, excluding the table leaders Djurgarden. One of the men most responsible for this is their goalkeeper Malkolm Nilsson, who’s kept a clean sheet on four occasions this season in the Allsvenskan, more than any other goalie in the league.
AIK vs Halmstad Betting Picks
Halmstad are great at the back, while AIK have been struggling to find the net lately. Sure, they did win in the previous round, but AIK got only one goal in that game from 27 attempts. We expect them to do even worse tonight!
Prediction: Halmstad +0.75 Asian Handicap – 2.00 Sportmarket
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