Roger Albertsen

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Roger Albertsen
Personal information
Full nameRoger Albertsen
Date of birth 15 March 1957
Place of birth Austvågøya i Nordland, Norway
Date of death 2 March 2003(2003-03-02) (aged 45)
Position(s) Midfielder
Youth career
Odda IL
Senior career*
YearsTeamApps(Gls)
1973–1975 Odda IL
1975–1979 FC Den Haag 117 (16)
1979–1980 Feyenoord 28 (1)
1980–1981 FC Den Haag 18 (6)
1981–1982 KFC Winterslag 39 (3)
1982–1985 Olympiacos 65 (7)
1985–1987 Rosenborg 35 (5)
National team
1976–1984 Norway 25 (3)
Teams managed
1989–1992 Orkanger IF
1993–1996 Sokna IL
1997–2001 Kongsberg IF
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

Roger Albertsen (15 March 1957 – 2 March 2003) was a Norwegian football midfielder.

Contents

Club career

At the age of 17 he travelled abroad, playing professionally for Dutch team FC Den Haag. He later played for Feyenoord Rotterdam, KFC Winterslag and Olympiakos, before he returned to Norway in 1985, making his debut in the Norwegian Premier League for Rosenborg.

Netherlands

Albertsen began his career with local lower-division sides Tyssedal and Odda. He was regarded as a promising talent, and represented Norway several times at youth level. Nonetheless, it came as something of a shock when he left the country at age 17 to try his luck in the Netherlands, joining his compatriot Harald Berg's old club Den Haag. Albertsen made his debut for the club in 1975, and soon became a regular in the Den Haag lineup, earning praise for his tireless running and no–nonsense physical play. His performance in the Eredivisie at Den Haag didn't go unnoticed back home and he made his debut for Norway in 1976.

In the summer of 1979, Albertsen was transferred to Feyenoord, where he became a valuable player in the side that finished fourth in the league and won the cup. However, at the end of the season, after just one year in Rotterdam, he returned to Den Haag.

Winterslag

He played one more season for Den Haag, and then he was on the move again – this time to Belgian side Winterslag (now known as Racing Genk following a 1988 merger). Albertsen quickly became a fan favorite at the Belgian club, and his performances earned him a recall to the national team for the World Cup qualifier against England – the game that would provide Albertsen's finest moment in a Norway shirt.

Olympiacos

Midway through the 1982/83 season, Albertsen was signed by Greek giants Olympiacos, where he won a league championship medal. He spent three years at the club, doing the dirty work in midfield, before his old friend Arne Dokken persuaded him to return home and play for Rosenborg

Rosenborg

So, in the summer of 1985, after a decade abroad, Albertsen played his first-ever top division game in the Norwegian league. He was a member of the Rosenborg side that won the title in dramatic fashion in 1985, and played two more years at the Trondheim club before retiring because of injury at the end of the 1987 season.

International career

He was capped 25 times [1] for Norway, having debuted in 1976. Many remember him from the famous match against England in 1981, where he was awarded the 1–1 goal, despite that television replays have later shown that Albertsen did in fact not touch the ball, and Tom Lund's cross went straight into the net.

He made his international debut in a World Cup qualifier against Switzerland in 1976. He is credited with scoring the equaliser in Norway's win over England in 1981. Bryan Robson gave the visitors the lead after 15 minutes. In the 35th minute, Albertsen went after a cross from Tom Lund and the ball went into the net. Albertsen was credited with the goal, but television replays seem to indicate that Albertsen did not make contact with the ball before it crossed the line. Hallvar Thoresen scored Norway's second goal four minutes before half-time and Norway went on to win the game 2–1.

Albertsen now got an extended run in the national side, and scored two more goals in a pair of summer friendlies. This time there was no doubt about Albertsen being the scorer. He was also a member of the team that defeated Yugoslavia 3–1 in a Euro 84 qualifier. Shortly after that match, he was on the move again.

Roger Albertsen was a hard-working and hard-tackling midfielder who never truly established himself as a first-choice in the Norway lineup, but he was a dependable player who did a fine job whenever he got the chance. He wasn't a finesse player, but his work-rate and determination made him a fan favorite at every club he played.

Retirement and death

After retiring from the game, Albertsen worked in the computer business, and also held coaching jobs for lower-division sides Orkanger, Sokna and Kongsberg. In late 2002, he was diagnosed with cancer, and he died from the disease in March 2003.

Honours

Club

Feyenoord
Olympiacos F.C.
Rosenborg BK

Individual

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References

  1. Norway – Record International Players – RSSSF
  2. "Mestvinnende" (in Norwegian). Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation . Retrieved 3 November 2009.CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)