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Vaajakoski

Ground: Vaajakosken keskuskenttä

Visits: 1

Date: 18th June 2010

Match: Jyväskylän JK - IFK Mariehamn  0-2 (Veikkausliiga)

Attendance: 2 102

 

My visit to Vaajakoski was for a Veikkausliiga match between Jyväskylän JK and IFK Mariehamn. Harjun stadion, where JJK normally play, was being rebuilt during the first half of the 2010 season.

For pictures of Harjun stadion please visit the Jyväskylän JK page

 

Report (Jyväskylän JK - IFK Mariehamn):

Since I was not going to South Africa this summer there was room and time to go somewhere else for a football tour. I had never visited Finland before and when I noticed their top division (Veikkausliiga) play during the World Cup the choice was easy. Matches in Finland are spread out and it was possible to do four matches in Veikkausliiga in four days. After going through train and bus timetables I decided for 3 top division games and 1 in Kakkonen (level 3) though. My journey to Finland started with me boarding the 5.20 train from Kristianstad and two hours later I was in Copenhagen. The flight to Helsinki was on time and shortly after noon local time I arrived in Finland for the first time in my life. The first game on this tour was in Jyväskylä. which is 3 h by train north of Helsinki.

 

Jyväskylä is probably most famous for hosting the Finnish rally every year. Finland have a proud history when it comes to motorsport and many great rally drivers have been successful in the woods around Jyväskylä. The local football team, Jyväskylän JK (JJK) was for the 2009 season for the first time ever promoted to the top tier of Finnish football. Normally they play their matches at Harjun Stadion but since that ground is being upgraded at the moment JJK are temporarily playing in Vaajakoski, 5 km east of Jyväskylä. Vaajakosken keskuskenttä, where Kakkonen club FC Vaajakoski normally play, has an all-seated main stand with a capacity of around 1 200. For FC Vaajakoski games this is the only stand used but with JJK moving in there are temporary stands on the far side and behind one of the goals.


Today´s visitors IFK Mariehamn, are from the Åland Islands meaning a 4 h ferry trip for every away game. Plus a number of hours on the a bus of course. People living on the Åland Islands speak Swedish and it was interesting to hear the home players speaking/shouting in one language (Finnish) and the away players in another (Swedish). Around 5 % of the population in Finland have Swedish as their native language but it is mainly in the coastal areas where the rest of the population understand Swedish. In Jyväskylä I tried to speak Swedish a couple of times but I soon gave up. Anyway, there was 1 away fan who had made the long trip to Jyväskylä. Since Mariehamn, bottom of the table, won by 2-0 he was in a good mood afterwards. We shared a taxi back to the hotel and he invited me to Åland and I promised him to go there in the near future. My first day in Finland came to an end and despite being on the move for too many hours I could still look back on a successful day. After watching England play Algeria (0-0) in the World Cup I can't say I regretted going to Finland over South Africa........

 

vaajakosken keskuskenttä

View of Vaajakosken keskuskenttä

 

north stand

North Stand

 

east end

East End

 

south stand

South Stand

 

west end

West End

 

north stand2

North Stand

 

 avspark

Kick-off

 

south stand2

South Stand

 

south stand3

A closer look at the South Stand

 

spelbild

View of play

 

west end2

West End

 

mariehamnfan

The only away fan!

 

pano, vaajakoski1

Pano

 

pano, vaajakoski2

Pano