To everyone's surprise, B68 Toftir lie second in the Faroe Islands, with 38-year-old defender Øssur Hansen admitting "the way things are going at the moment, it's a lot of fun to play football".
Having played their first top-tier campaign in 1981, B68 quickly became regulars at the right end of the table, winning tites in 1984, 1985 and most recently 1992. The 2000s, however, proved to be more turbulent with the club yo-yoing between the top two divisions, being relegated in 2004 and 2006 and promoted back to the top division at the end of the 2005 and 2007 seasons.
Silver medal position
Last year's campaign represented a return to some kind of stability, as B68 recovered from a shaky start to finish sixth, having hit great form in the latter half of the schedule. Nonetheless, few expected that form to continue quite so dramatically in 2009, with the club just about within sight of leaders HB Tórshavn, who are six points clear of the pack after 15 games.
Central defender Poul Jóhannus Justinussen had confidence in his side before the start of the season, saying: "I expect we're going to do very well. If we manage to play the whole season as we did in the second half of last year's competition, then I believe we could finish fourth or even better." Against the odds, that is starting to look like a conservative prediction.
B68 owe part of their strength to foreign players. Serbian midfielder Nenad Stanković and goalkeeper Vlada Filipović are among the finest players in their positions in the league, while two Senegalese imports, midfielder Ndende Gueye and forward Ahmed Keita, have impressed, the latter second only to NSÍ Runavík's Károly Potemkin in the scorers' rankings with ten goals.
However, the overseas stars have received more than capable support from local talent, with striker Jóan Símun Edmundsson – who turns 18 next Sunday – making the biggest waves. Scorer of the winner in the Faroe Island Under-21 side's historic 1-0 win against Russia on 9 June, he has superb dribbling and is regarded as one of the islands' most promising young players.
'A lot of fun'
At 38, Hansen is also pulling his weight, setting up three of B68's goals in Sunday's 4-2 win against KÍ Klaksvík, but he played down any talk of a title. "Earlier this year our goal was to be up there in the hunt, but catching HB is not something we are thinking about right here and now," he said. "We are taking it one match at a time but the way things are going at the moment, it's a lot of fun to play football."
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