Since Eliteserien football was last played, the transfer market has been busy. In this preview I’ve tried to cover all of the major moves; new additions to the league have been marked with italics, those yet to be added to the fantasy game at time of writing are marked with (TBC).
Norway has been well represented in Europe. Rosenborg saw off BATE Borisov and, if they can beat Maribor over two legs, will reach the Champions League playoff round and be guaranteed some form of European football in 2019-20.
Brann were knocked out of the Europa League by Shamrock Rovers in the first qualifying round, but Molde and Haugesund have both made it to the third round where they will face Aris and Dutch giants PSV respectively. These qualifiers could shape how these teams, and fantasy managers, approach the next few gameweeks, starting with these GW16 fixtures:
Odd vs. Lillestrøm
A poor showing at Mjøndalen did no favours to Odd’s title hopes, but they still have a game in hand on the leaders. Sander Svendsen joined Denmark’s Odense after his loan from Hammarby ended. His replacement is Moussa Njie, formerly of Stabæk. Fredrik Oldrup Jensen will stay for the rest of the season after his loan from Zulte Waregem was extended.
In: Moussa Njie (6.5m MID, loan), Fredrik Oldrup Jensen (loan extended)
Out: Sander Svendsen (loan return)
Thomas Lehne Olsen could return from injury here. Arnor Smarason ran the show for Lillestrøm last time out, but for those on a budget Aleksander Melgalvis has also shown some form of late. Joonas Tamm, who spent last season at Sarpsborg, is now eligible to play after joining last month.
In: Joonas Tamm (4.5m DEF, loan)
Out: Alex Dyer (loan return)
Sarpsborg 08 vs. Rosenborg
Sarpsborg’s defence was depleted further by the departures of Aleksandr Vasyutin and Sheldon Bateau. In goal, Aslak Falch will now compete with Alexandre Letellier, who has Ligue 1 experience. Magnar Ødegaard returns to his former club, while some less familiar faces have also joined the ranks. Jørgen Strand Larsen is back from international duty after Lars-Jørgen Salvesen‘s DGW dud.
In: Bart Straalman (5.5m DEF), Magnar Ødegaard (5m DEF), Alexandre Letellier (5.5m GK, loan), Lenny Nangis (7m MID), Mario Pavelic (5.5m DEF, loan), Mate Males (5.5m MID)
Out: Aleksandr Vasyutin (Zenit), Sheldon Bateau (Mechelen), Anwar Elyounoussi (Fram Larvik, loan)
The champions look more like themselves of late and are yet to add to their squad in this window. There were monster hauls for Alexander Søderlund and Vegar Eggen Hedenstad against Viking, while Mike Jensen and Anders Konradsen have been delivering regular points from midfield.
Out: Besim Serbecic (FK Sarajevo, loan)
Ranheim vs. Brann
Ranheim’s squad is all but unchanged. Will they capitulate as they did against Bodø/Glimt or repeat their impressive cup victory over this weekend’s opponents?
Vito Wormgoor is expected to return after his agonising substitution against Mjøndalen. Petter Strand has delivered crucial assists in both of the two games he’s started on the bench. Kristoffer Løkberg is still a Brann player for now, but Viking want him.
In: Erlend Hustad (TBC)
Out: Henrik Kjelsrud Johansen (Fredrikstad), Ludcinio Marengo (released), Jesper Löfgren (Mjällby, loan)
Stabæk vs. FK Haugesund
Franck Boli’s departure was inevitable. Can new signing Kosuke Kinoshita replace Boli’s goals or will youngsters like Oscar Aga or Herman Geelmuyden be given a chance up front? Tortol Lumanza Lembi was a bonus magnet for Stabæk in 2017 and returns to bolster the midfield after Tobias Børkeeiet’s departure.
In: Sammy Skytte (4.5m MID, loan), Yaw Amankwah (4.5m DEF), Kosuke Kinoshita (6m FWD), Tortol Lumanza Lembi (6m MID)
Out: Youness Mokhtar (released), Tobias Børkeeiet (Brøndby), Madis Vihmann (loan return), Franck Boli (Ferencvaros)
Haugesund are enjoying their European tour. Ibrahim Shuaibu’s 6 goals made him a budget favourite in 2017, but Kevin Martin Krygård could be the new bargain attacker in town after his Europa League heroics.
In: Ibrahim Shuaibu (6.5m FWD, loan return), Pascal Gregor (TBC)
Tromsø vs. Mjøndalen
Unable to rely on any of their strikers with Runar Espejord’s continued injury problems, Tromsø have finally brought in long-time target Fitim Azemi.
In: Fitim Azemi (loan)
Mjøndalen will have to do without the in-form Tonny Brochmann through suspension. It’s perhaps a surprise to see Alfred Scriven loaned out given his super-sub ability, although Olivier Occean scored in the win against his former club Odd. Pontus Silfwer begins a second spell at the club.
In: Pontus Silfwer (5m MID)
Out: Alfred Scriven (Ull/Kisa, loan), Mathias Eriksen Ranmark (loan return)
Viking FK vs. Molde
There are question marks over both Kristian Thorstvedt and Ylldren Ibrahimaj’s fitness for this match. Viking lost the reverse fixture 5-1 and lost their last league match by the same score.
In: Benjamin Källman (6.5m FWD, loan)
Molde haven’t made any signings, but seem to have the squad to cope with a title race and Europa League qualification, especially without a GW17 fixture.
In: Tobias Svendsen (loan return), Mathias Eriksen Ranmark (loan return)
Out: Christoffer Remmer (Westerlo), Christopher Telo (released)
Vålerenga vs. Kristiansund BK
Nearly a month since their last competitive game, will Vålerenga be the same attacking force without Chidera Ejuke?
In: Magnus Grødem (loan return), Christian Borchgrevink (loan return)
Out: Chidera Ejuke (Heerenveen), Fitim Azemi (Tromsø, loan)
Amidou Diop and Aliou Coly miss out through suspension.
Out: Brent Lepistu (released), Christopher Lindquist (loan return)
Strømsgodset vs. Bodø/Glimt
Godset turn to some unknown quantities in their battle against the drop. Moses Mawa could be an exciting addition if he can score as many goals as he has in the lower divisions; ditto Mikkel Maigaard.
In: Moses Mawa (6m FWD), Duplexe Tchamba (4.5m DEF), Mikkel Maigaard (6m MID), Prosper Mendy (TBC), Christopher Lindquist (loan return)
Out: Marcus Pedersen (released), Yacouba Sylla (Cluj)
Glimt may have caused a stir in the league this season but have been quiet in the transfer market, only adding Ole Amund Sveen. There are doubts over first choice defensive pairing Brede Moe and Marius Lode this week.
In: Ole Amund Sveen (6m FWD)