Season 2022: Suomen Cup Qualifying
An Overview Of Peimari United In Suomen Cup Qualifying 2022
"After narrowly missing out on the Veikkausliiga title last season, we were prepared to fight for the league once again. However, first up was Suomen Cup qualifying starting in January. With a host of new players joining, we were expected to play at a higher level."
Peimari United Sold Oliver Antman But Brought In A Host Of Foreign Players
First in the door was youngster Marco Aurélio. The Brazilian came through the Anapolina academy in Brazil but failed to make a senior appearance before being released. His agent offered him up on a plate for a free transfer, and we took the risk on him. It was a risk we saw as worth taking, and Aurélio was immediately pushed into the youth team.
Alongside Aurélio was Tornike Dzadzamia. The young Georgian goalkeeper made thirty-six senior appearances for Dinamo Tbilisi before he turned eighteen years old and left the club in search of a better club. The one-time capped Georgian goalkeeper joined the club with an eye to becoming the club's starting goalkeeper. Dzadzamia became, arguably, the best goalkeeper in the league immediately and was rated as one of the best young goalkeepers in the world.
Lucas Villela came in to provide quality in the wide attacking positions. The Brazilian attacker most recently played for Lithuanian side Stumbras before joining Peimari United on a free transfer. He had some amount of pace to burn, and was a very competent player on the ball. His major attribute was his flair, and he was capable of producing something from nothing.
Kevin Larsson rejoined the club on a one-year loan deal from Sochi, having left for the Russian side in a €165,000 deal last season. Larsson came in to regain his starting spot at the club. His ability to score and assist goals on a regular basis made him an ideal signing, even if just on a short-term deal.
Antti-Ville Räisänen was a mistake of a signing. He was highly-rated by my scouts, but he was less than impressive since joining. We were looking to ship him out as quickly as we brought him in, as we were certain he would not make a meaningful impact in our squad.
Johannes Laaksonen was a particularly exciting signing. The former SJK midfielder was a veteran Veikkausliiga player and had the quality to be the heartbeat of our midfield, following the departure of Oliver Antman. However, Laaksonen suffered a career-ending achilles injury in his first few days of training with the club, and was/will be forced into early retirement.
Our only fee paid was for Miikka Vanhala. The young holding midfielder joined from EsPa for €110. The teenage midfielder made fifty-four senior appearances for EsPa in all competitions before completing his move to Peimari United and joined to become an understudy to current starting holding midfielder Eero Hyökyvirta.
Moussa Faye joined following the departure of Oliver Antman. The Senegalese midfielder was a youth product of Fiorentina and, despite not making any senior appearances for the club, was very highly rated. The midfielder made three U20 appearances for his country, and instantly became one of the star players of the Veikkausliiga. His ability as a playmaker, alongside his defensive abilities, made him an ideal candidate for a role in our midfield.
Yuri became our final signing (to date). The Brazilian central defender joined on a free transfer, having most recently played for Portuguese side Académica Coimbra. Yuri made eighty-five appearances in total for Coimbra from 2016 until 2022 and joined Peimari United as a highly-rated player. While he was known for bending the rules on the pitch from time-to-time, he certainly added to Peimari's defence, which was shaky at best last season.
Oliver Antman was the main departure, leaving for a hefty €145,000 fee. Several senior players left on loan, while some younger players left permanently, in a relatively quiet window of departures for Peimari United.
Peimari United Won Four Of Five Qualifying Fixtures In An Impressive Early Season Start
We had every reason to be pleased with our performances in the qualifying games, except for the last one. We began with a tough trip to FC Lahti. Kevin Larsson, who returned to the club on loan, kicked off our season with a well-taken goal before proving to be key in both of Jarno Seppälä's goals. Lahti scored one, but our three was enough to secure an opening day victory to the sound of 3-1.
Larsson showed us what we were missing in the end of last season's title-race as he went on to score four goals in our next game, against HIFK. We conceded three goals, but our six goals was enough for us to win 6-3.
We began to experiment a bit more in the next few games, and Moussa Faye's first goal for the club was the difference in a tight clash against FC Ilves as we came out 1-0 winners. It was a tough game, but the players were being put through their paces thoroughly ahead of the upcoming Veikkausliiga season and secured the win.
A second-half rally saw us defeat KuPS 2-0 in our second-last qualifier. Last season's marquee signing Guido Claeys scored from the spot before Moussa Faye scored his second goal in as many games to give us a win which guaranteed us progression to the knockout rounds of the Suomen Cup.
There was plenty of rotation for our final game, and SJK took advantage as they inflicted a 1-2 defeat on us. On-loan star Robinho (no, not that one) opened proceedings for SJK, before Moussa Faye scored to level the game for us. SJK star Maximo Tolonen proved the difference, and scored the winner for the hosts in the second half.
Suomen Cup Last Sixteen Draw
IFK Mariehamn Awaited Peimari United In The Last Sixteen
The last sixteen draw was somewhat kind on us. We were drawn against Ykkönen side IFK Mariehamn. The game was to be played at Idrottsparken in Mariehamn, on the island of Åland at the end of April. We were major favourites for the fixture, but we were not going to take anything for granted. We wanted to add another Suomen Cup trophy to our ever-increasing cabinet.
| Indeed it is.
| European football will be a huge challenge, but these are the games we want to be involved in.
| Hopefully he can take the club even further now!
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