Mighty TPS against little PIF at Kuppi’s football stadium. It would just end one way, right? This time the points went away along Skärgårdsvägen. Sad, Kasper Hämäläinen sums up for Yle Sporten.
The Piffen players cheered, celebrated and ran up to the fans who took over one end of the main stand at Kuppi’s football stadium.
“Piffen, Piffen, Piffen” echoed over the rather worn natural grass while the players eagerly thanked the fans for their support.
At the other end?
“Out with Tintin!”
The black and white supporters had lost their temper even before Piffen nailed it to 2-0. This was a match the home team would take. This would be an easy three points.
Then the players did not even dare go to their own supporters to thank them.
Cool finish on few chances
It was Gezim Voca who put in 1-0 in the 69th minute after he himself was hijacked right at the edge of the penalty area. The team captain was clinical with his free kick and set the goal that would stand as a winning goal.
The cheers in Pargasändan in the stands were only four minutes later when Matias Lahti snorted in 2-0 from distance after negligence by the TPS defense.
And Åbolaget completely lost the concept.
The most dominating TPS player was without a doubt 85 minutes into the match, and the keeper made the save. He probably knew he was offside, but the line judge did not have the flag up.
TPS fans cheered loudly. And most of the spectators thought it was time to start moving home.
“We wanted more today – well-deserved victory”
Stefan Strömborg was a disappointment, however. Piffen’s coach could not stop smiling as he sat down in the press room after the match.
– This is the association’s biggest victory ever. You are all welcome to write that, he says emphatically.
It is actually not possible to write a finer script for Pargas IF’s football journey. From third to first – and to beat the series’ giant and also local rival away.
– I am happiest to be able to give this to everyone who works for the association without getting paid for it. We have an enormous number of people who work to ensure that everything goes smoothly without getting anything back, he says.
Piffen actually won the match both mentally and tactically. Strömborg as well as TPS Jonatan Johansson and Kasper Hämäläinen allow it.
– We got the match where we wanted it. We wanted more today. This was well deserved, in fact, says Strömborg.
– We knew they would defend in an organized manner and hit long balls – which they did. Until their goal, we managed the job decently, we had chances and ball possession. But you have to take advantage of your chances. The first goal was very decisive, says TPS colleague Johansson.
– We were probably miserable almost the whole match. We were not ready … it felt like the energy was staying in the locker room. We will not get started, Piffen wins duels and takes over the match, Hämäläinen analyzes.
Why does the energy stay in the locker room?
– That’s the big question. It’s hard to say, the veteran striker replies, obviously disappointed.
Less affectionate reunion
For Jonatan Johansson, it was about the first match against his former foster parents’ association. But it did not weigh too heavily, he certifies.
– I have played against many old associations. It is the players on the pitch who play, my previous associations do not matter much, “Tintin” says calmly.
The way the players reacted, he is not happy with at all. Partly the way his men got into the match, partly how the spine seemed to break completely already after the first setback.
– I’m a little disappointed with how we react, actually. It became disorganized and concedes another goal after a mistake. There were 20 minutes left when we let in the first one. We were a little shocked and then it goes as it goes. But such is football sometimes, you have to live with both the good and the bad.
The positive thing is still that TPS has had a pretty good season so far. And considering that the goal is still to step up to the league, the loss against Piffen is possibly more than anything else an alarm clock.
– Of course it’s an alarm clock. To win a football match, it takes quite a lot. Everyone must give everything. We fight at least, but the balls bounce to Piffen. Now we have to watch the match again to get the answer to why it goes that way. We do not play our own game, says Hämäläinen.
You yourself have played in slightly bigger derby matches as well, for example when Legia Warsaw and Lech Poznan meet, everything is a little bigger both for better or worse. How do you as a player have to go into matches like this where the intensity is increased?
– You have to keep calm. But I know we can play football. Therefore, it feels extra heavy. We did not do that today. It makes me a little angry. Now we have to talk to each other and do the basics the same way we did before.
Revenge at Pajbacka?
Piffen, on the other hand, intends to use the victory on Monday night as lighter fluid.
– But of course we should enjoy this too, suck on the caramel at least today, says Strömborg and smiles, if possible, even wider before he adds:
– But when the next match comes, we must properly tackle this victory and continue with the same humility we had today. It is not enough with happy faces and patting yourself on the chest. This is how we want to act on the football field. We want to continue with these feats.
The next time the teams meet is at Pajbacka in Pargas. Although Johansson refuses to admit that it would have been special to face the Pargas team in Kuppis, he agrees that it may be a little emotional later.
– Maybe, we’ll see later, he says and smiles a little.
Revenge craving is there at least?