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Season review: Faroe Islands

Coach Oddbjørn Joensen said HB Tórshavn had "the best squad ever seen in the Faroe Islands" as they took the title with Fródi Benjaminsen player of the year for a fourth time.

HB celebrate winning the 2013 Faroese title
HB celebrate winning the 2013 Faroese title ©Rakul Hansen/www.hb.fo

Seconds away from eliminating Iceland's ÍBV Vestmannaeyjar in the UEFA Europa League first qualifying round, HB Tórshavn once more failed to lift the Faroese Cup – a trophy that has eluded them since 2004 – but there was no stopping them in the league.

Champions: HB Tórshavn
Though HB had won six Premier Division titles between 2002 and 2010, the pressure for another championship was beginning to mount after a relegation battle in 2011 and third-placed finish in 2012. However, having taken charge ahead of the season, coach Oddbjørn Joensen delivered in style with a brand of attacking football that simply blew opponents away.

They ended up five points clear of the pack, having set the pace throughout. "Overall, I think this is the best squad that has ever been seen in the Faroe Islands – I honestly think the Faroese national team would have problems if they came up against a full-strength HB," Joensen concluded.

Cup final: Víkingur 2-0 EB/Streymur
EB/Streymur beat HB on penalties in the quarter-finals, yet for the second season in a row came unstuck against Víkingur in the final. It was Víkingur's third cup success in the six years since they were formed through the 2008 merger of GÍ Gøta and LÍF Leirvík – with all those triumphs coming at EB/Streymur's expense. Striker Finnur Justinussen set Víkingur on course for victory No3 after 14 minutes, before midfielder Sølvi Vatnhamar doubled the lead five minutes later. After that the result was never in doubt.

European places*
HB Tórshavn – UEFA Champions League first qualifying round
ÍF Fuglafjørdur – UEFA Europa League first qualifying round
B36 Tórshavn – UEFA Europa League first qualifying round
Víkingur – UEFA Europa League first qualifying round

*subject to final confirmation from UEFA

Player of the year: Fródi Benjaminsen (HB Tórshavn)
The 2001, 2009 and 2010 winner took his fourth Player of the Year prize. Not only was HB's 35-year-old captain inspirational in attack and defence, he was also his side's 11-goal top scorer. Coach Joensen was full of praise for his midfield pivot: "He's a goalscorer, a ball-player, always hard working and an incredible example to all when it comes to training because he gives maximum effort in every session and drives us forward with his attitude."

Benjaminsen does most of his talking with his feet and was very modest when he received the award: "This honour means very much to me and I'm very happy about it, but it comes with the help of good team-mates."

One to watch: Heini Vatnsdal (HB Tórshavn)
Having played for FC Suduroy before switching to HB this season, midfielder Vatnsdal, 22, was far from a household name, although his performances for the national youth teams had signalled his potential. However, he started making headlines quickly with HB, scoring nine league goals and also catching the eye of national coach Lars Olsen, who gave him his debut in a June FIFA World Cup qualifier against the Republic of Ireland.

Surprise package: ÍF Fuglafjørdur
Although some players returned to the club after an exodus at the end of last term, it was still a major surprise that ÍF finished runners-up for the second season running – providing the only meaningful challenge to all-conquering HB. ÍF trailed the leaders by ten points at one stage, but managed to cut the deficit to five with a 3-1 win over HB towards the close of the campaign. "We are up at the top end and that's where we want to be," said chairman Magnus Jørmundsson. "We are now an established force."

Leading scorer: Klæmint Andrasson Olsen, NSÍ Runavík (21)

Relegated: 07 Vestur and TB Tvøroyri

Promoted: B68 Toftir and Skála

Number: 68
The number of goals champions HB scored during the league season: a national record.

"I have switched the horse for a pig."
With his Víkingur team struggling, captain Atli Gregersen's mantra was "we have to get back on the horse again"; after another defeat, he decided his side may have changed species.