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Teams in Oslo

Despite being the capital of Norway, Oslo-based sides seem to be averse to success, to the point where in the 2023/2024 season there isn’t a single Oslo-based side playing in the top league. This begs the questions; “Where are they?” and “Has it always been like this?” as the likes of Rosenborg, Molde and Bodo/Glimdt take the crown as some of the Country’s biggest sides, Oslo is underpresented.

Historically however, Oslo has seen its fair share of top sides, while also boasting a slew of smaller sides that help prop up the footballing pyramid and have produced some of the country’s young talent.

Read on to learn all about Oslo’s footballing history and the clubs that make up Norway’s largest city.

Vålerenga Fotball

Vålerenga Fotball was founded in 1913. Despite being the biggest side in Oslo, Vålerenga find themselves currently in Norway’s second division. Their history has seen smatterings of success, the most recent coming in 2005 when they were crowned champions of the Eliteserien, Norway’s top league.

5 years later they finished runners-up, but since 2010 the side has been on the decline, stuck in midtable up until 2020, where they rallied to a 3rd place finish. Sadly, 2 seasons later, they were relegated finishing just shy of safety in 14th place.

While they may be languishing in the second tier, they boast a passionate fan base as they struck a chord with the working class upon their foundation, recruiting players from workers in the surrounding area of the Vålerenga neighbourhood. 

The club has clinched several domestic titles, including 4 Norwegian Football Cups, and 5 Eliteserien.

Lyn Fotball

Lyn Fotball, established in 1896, holds a special place in Oslo’s football heritage as Oslo’s oldest club. With a history dating back over a century, Lyn has experienced European highs and devastating lows in the doldrums of Norway’s lower leagues.

Their best period came in the ’60s, where two top-flight title wins and almost knocking Barcelona out of the 1969 Cup winners cup in a thrilling 5-4 loss proved their greatest spell.

But recent years have seen very little to shout about… Financial turmoil sent the club into bankruptcy. The erroneous sale of John Obi Mikel to Chelsea resulted in a lawsuit that sent the club into the red, and in 2008 they filed for bankruptcy, subsequently dropping from Norway’s second tier to their 7th.

They have since battled their way back up to the second division, now on the precipice of a long-awaited return to the Eliteserien. Despite its ups and downs, Lyn remains a beloved institution in Oslo’s football community boasting a stadium with a 15,400 capacity.

Stabæk Fotball

Located in the neighbouring municipality of Bærum, Stabæk was founded in 1912 and has enjoyed most of its success in the past 25 years.

Having just been relegated from the Eliteserien, the side is somewhat of a sleeping giant, and will be expected to bounce back immediately. 

The club have won Norway’s top flight just once, in 2008, and won the Norwegian Cup in 1998, the two trophies marking their only major domestic silverware.

Despite a paltry trophy cabinet, they have been present in European competition scores of times in recent years, almost knocking out Spanish Champions Deportivo De La Coruna back in 1999.

Their last European adventure, however, ended embarrassingly, losing 1-0 over two legs to Welsh side Connah’s Quay Nomads.

Skeid Fotball

Skeid Fotball, formed in 1915, has become well revered as a ‘talent factory’ in Norway, producing many players who have gone on to earn moves to bigger leagues or go on to play for the national side.

While Skeid may not have as much success in recent history as Vålerenga, they have won the top division before, their sole triumph coming in 1966.

However, their last season in the top flight was back in 1999. The club have bounced between the 2nd and 3rd divisions for the past 20 or so years, and in the most recent season were relegated to the 3rd division.

Skeid’s best era came in the 50s and early 60s, as from 1954 to 1965 they won 6 Norwegian cups. They have won 8 overall, their last win coming in 1974.

Grorud IL Fotball

Grorud IL Fotball, founded in 1918, represents the Grorud district of Oslo. 

While not as widely recognised as some of the city’s other clubs, Grorud IL has made significant strides in recent years, ascending through the Norwegian football pyramid, and making it into the second division after years of battling up from the 4th division.

Establishing themselves as a relatively decent team, they have taken themselves within reach of the top flight. With a focus on grassroots development and community engagement, the club continues to make a positive impact both on and off the pitch.

Kjelsås IL Fotball

Kjelsås IL Fotball, established in 1913, is another longstanding football club based in Oslo, that has yet to reach the peak of Norwegian football. 

Currently competing in the 3rd tier of Norwegian football, Kjelsås IL has established itself as a perennial fixture of the second and third divisions, coming close to promotion to the top flight multiple times, but failing to make that final leap.

Their greatest success came just last year, where a semi-final appearance in the Norwegian Cup saw them bravely battle giants, Molde FK, falling 3-2 and just short of a momentous spot in the final.

Bækkelaget Sportsklubb Fotball

Bækkelaget Sportsklubb Fotball, founded in 1909, represents the Bækkelaget neighbourhood of Oslo. A football team overshadowed by the success of the club’s handball team, Bækkelaget have never made it beyond the 3rd division of Norsk football.

IF Ready Fotball

IF Ready Fotball was established in 1907, by Aage Blom Lorentzen and play their home games at Gressbanen in Oslo. Despite its long history, very little statistical data exists for them, with their most noteworthy performance being a 9-0 loss to Marten Odegaard’s former side, Strømsgodset.

IF Ready, much like Bækkelaget finds their football team overshadowed by the club’s over sports teams, and in If Ready’s case, the Bandy side has enjoyed great success, winning 14 national bandy championships.

In football, IF Ready reside in the country’s 6th tier.

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