IF Elfsborg have lifted the Swedish Cup for the third time in their history after overcoming Helsingborgs IF 1-0 in the final.
Targeting the trophy and the accompanying place in Europe, acting coach Jan Mian had insisted ahead of the showpiece that possession and a fast passing game would be key. Elfsborg showed from the start that they intended to follow his instructions, despite the absence of injured playmaker Anders Svensson, with forward Lasse Nilsson heading over the game's first chance from a Viktor Claesson cross on nine minutes.
Claesson and fellow midfielder Marcus Rohdén were behind much of Elfsborg's attacking intentions, while Helsingborg's biggest threat lay in the fast legs of winger David Accam, selected in Ghana's provisional FIFA World Cup squad. Minutes after his missed header, Nilsson found himself clear, but – with much of the Friends Arena in Solna sensing an opener – the forward fluffed his effort.
Rohdén then hit the bar and right-back Johan Larsson had a free-kick saved by Pär Hansson as Elfsborg continued applying pressure. It seemed a matter of time before the Helsingborg goalkeeper would be beaten, and the deadlock was broken on 54 minutes as Hansson pawed away a Nilsson effort, only for the striker to pounce on Jon Jönsson's header from the resulting corner.
"It's a great feeling," said Nilsson. "We were a bit nervous before the match, considering we had missed out on a European spot in the league table last autumn." With Elfsborg coach Klas Ingesson currently away from the bench as he battles illness, Mian dedicated the win to his boss. "We said we wanted to do this for Klas, and boy did they do it."
©UEFA.com 1998-2017. All rights reserved.