Trondheim’s Rosenborg football club (RBK), historically Norway’s most sucessful soccer team, only has to win one more match to get into UEFA’s Champions League. Even if it loses, Rosenborg will qualify for the Europa League, formerly known as the UEFA Cup.
RBK beat reigning Swedish champion AIK 3-0 on Wednesday. Having won 1-0 when they played away earlier at AIK’s home stadium outside Stockholm, Rosenborg’s 4-0 agregate win opens the way to a season of matches in Europe.
Among the teams they can be drawn against in the next qualifying round for the Champions League are Anderlecht from Belgium, Basel from Switzerland, the Danish side FC København, Sparta Praha from the Czech Republic or Hapoel Tel Aviv from Israel. The draw takes place on Friday.
Rade Prica, who scored the first goal against AIK, thinks Rosenborg can qualify. “We have nothing to lose now. We won’t be playing against any world-class players in the next round either. I think we stand a good chance,” says Prica to Rosenborg’s website rbk.no.
In addition to pleasing RBK fans and TV audiences, the victory against AIK also improves the Norwegian Premier League club’s finances.
“Knowing that we’ll be playing in either the Europa Cup or the Champions League will make things simpler for us. The club’s finances are now secure, with a little extra to spare,” says Rosenborg director Nils Skutle to rbk.no
Rosenborg won 13 national championships in a row ending in 2005. Between 1995 and 2006 Rosenborg took part in the group stage of the Champions League 11 times. Rosenborg reached the quarter-finals after beating Milan 2-1 during the 1996-97 season and reached the second group stage in the 1999-2000 season. Fans are now looking forward to seeing Rosenborg back on the European circuit.