Football Season Starts in Norway with Tippeligaen

The league is a bit different than the other leagues
in Europe because of weather conditions in Norway. Tippeligaen usually starts
in the end of March and ends in the beginning of November. 16 teams play two
matches against each other, so each team plays 30 matches.

Rosenborg dominated the league

Rosenborg has the record of the most league title’s
won, and an amazing statistics. They have won the title every year from 1992 to
2004, 12 years in a row.  Yet they failed to show the same success in
European cups.

Before 1937, there was no
national league competition in Norway; only regional leagues and the Norwegian
Cup. Starting in 1937–38, the various regional leagues in Southern Norway were
aligned into eight districts, with a championship playoff between the winners
to crown a national champion. This competition was called Norgesserien
(English: The League of Norway). There were plans at the time to merge the
district leagues into a national competition, but because of World War II, this
process was delayed until after the war.

In 1948, Hovedserien was
created, consisting of the 16 top teams from the district leagues, who were
placed into two groups of eight, with the group winners playing for the
national championship at the end of the season. This format was in place from
the 1948–49 season until 1960–61, when it was decided to merge the two groups
into a single top division, and have the season follow the calendar year from
1963 onwards. The 1961–62 season became a transitional season, where the 16 top
flight teams were placed in a single group, playing a season that lasted 18 months.
Officially still known as Hovedserien, the 1961–62 season became informally
known as Maratonserien (The Marathon League) because of its unusual length.

In 1963, a single top
division containing ten teams was introduced, and the league was renamed 1. Divisjon
(English: 1st Division). The league was expanded to 12 teams in 1972. In 1991,
the league was renamed Tippeligaen, after Norsk Tipping which has been the main
sponsor of the league since then, while the name 1. Divisjon, was
“inherited” by the second level league of the Norwegian football
system in 1991. In 1995, Tippeligaen was expanded to 14 teams, and in 2009 it
was further expanded to 16 teams.

An important note is that
teams from Northern Norway were not allowed to play in the top division before
1972. In 1979 north Norwegian teams were given the same promotion rights as
southern Norwegian teams.

As of the 2013 season there
are 16 clubs in the Tippeligaen, six of which are located in or near the
Oslofjord area, while seven clubs are from Western Norway. Tromsø is the only
team north of the Arctic Circle. During the course of a season, each club plays
the others twice, home and away, for a total of 30 games for each club, and a
total of 240 games in a season. The season starts in March and lasts until
early November. Rounds played during the weekends are broken up into one game
on Saturdays, six games on Sundays and one game on Mondays. Midweek rounds are
broken up into six games on Wednesdays and one game on Thursdays. For the final
two rounds, all games start simultaneously so that no club may gain an unfair
advantage by knowing the results of other games in advance of kicking off their
own.

The 16 May round, which is
played the day before Norway’s Constitution Day, 17 May, is one of the most
anticipated rounds of the season. It is often referred to as the “national
day of football” and since it precedes a national holiday, games usually
see higher attendance than other rounds.

Teams receive three points
for a win and one point for a draw. No points are awarded for a loss. Teams are
ranked by total points, then goal difference, goals scored, and then head to
head records used to separate teams on equal points. At the end of each season,
the club with the most points is crowned “League Winner”. The title
of “Champions” is reserved for the Cup Winners. The two lowest placed
teams are automatically relegated to the First Division and the top two teams
from the First Division take their place. Traditionally the fourteenth placed
team in the Premier League is also in danger of being relegated and must enter
play-offs with teams from the First Division to stay in the top flight, but the
play-offs were not played in 2011. The next year, four teams placed third to
six in the First Division contested a play-off to play against the team that
finished 14th in Tippeligaen.

Supporters

Norway is a winter sports country. But still the
interest in Football is pretty good in average. 1997 was the year with the
lowest supporters with only 4200 fans in average per match. The number
increased since then every year. Only 10 years after, there was a record with
over 10000 fans in average per match, but the trend did not continue upward.
Now the latest numbers for 2013 shows that there are only 6800 fans in every
match in average.

Tippeligaen round 1

The 2014 Tippeligaen season will be the 70th season of
top-tier football in Norway. The competition will begin on 30 March 2014, two
weeks later than in the previous season. There will be a three-week
summer-break in June due to the 2014 World Cup, and the decisive match will be
played on 9 November 2014.

The league will be contested by 16 teams: The best 13
teams of the 2013 season, and the 14th placed Sarpsborg 08 who won the
relegation-playoffs against Ranheim, in addition to Bodø/Glimt and Stabæk who
won promotion from the 2013 Norwegian First Division..

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