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FH pip unlucky Keflavík to the crown

Published: Tuesday 7 October 2008, 18.02CET
FH Hafnarfjördur can once again call themselves the best team in Iceland after regaining the title in dramatic fashion – needing a last-day victory and a defeat for nearest rivals Keflavík to take the honours by a single point.
by Stefán Stefánsson
from Reykjavik
Published: Tuesday 7 October 2008, 18.02CET

FH pip unlucky Keflavík to the crown

FH Hafnarfjördur can once again call themselves the best team in Iceland after regaining the title in dramatic fashion – needing a last-day victory and a defeat for nearest rivals Keflavík to take the honours by a single point.

This was the season FH Hafnarfjördur re-established their dominance of Icelandic football. Heimir Gudjónsson, in his debut season as manager, led FH to their fourth championship in five years, recovering a crown taken last term by Valur Reykjavík.

‘We are the best team’
It was hardly plain-sailing, however. With FH winning at Fylkir on the last day of the season – 27 September – they also needed rivals Keflavík to lose at home to third-placed Fram Reykjavík. Keflavík's eventual 2-1 defeat, combined with FH's 2-0 victory, decided the destination of the Urvalsdeild title by a single point, although Gudjónsson was convinced the right club prevailed. "We are the best team, there's no doubt about it," he said. "I'm very proud of my boys."

'Sad result'
There was obvious disappointment for Keflavík who had led the division for most of the campaign and thought their 35-year wait for the championship was finally over. According to manager Kristján Gudmundsson, however, there was still much optimism to be gained. "There is no doubt this is a very, very sad result. We were so close to landing the big one but still so far from it," he said. "But I think our success this summer is just the beginning – Keflavík are now one of the big teams in Iceland and that is how it is going to be." Gudmundsson could also take heart from the fact two of his players, Gudmundur Steinarsson and Björgólfur Takefusa, topped the domestic scoring chart with 16 and 14 goals respectively.

Cup success
The other big winners were KR Reykjavík who lifted the Icelandic Cup after beating Fjölnir 1-0 in Saturday's final thanks to an 88th-minute own goal by Kristján Hauksson. "We were the stronger team, missed some good chances, but remained patient and eventually got the victory," said KR manager Logi Ólafsson. "It has been a while since we won the cup and it is great to lift the trophy," added veteran defender Pétur Haflidi Marteinsson, who went on to announce his retirement. "We decided early on to go for the cup and we deserved to win it, even though the goal came late. I am determined to stop playing and, for me personally, it was great to end my career with a medal." Not so cheerful at the season's end were HK Kópavogs and ÍA Akranes who were relegated, to be replaced by Stjarnan FC and ÍBV Vestmannaeyjar.

Last updated: 08/10/08 0.39CET

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