Tuesday, January 3, 2012

More on Markus Holgersson

With the Red Bulls poised to sign Swedish defender Markus Holgersson, I had the chance to exchange e-mails this afternoon with Torbjörn Dencker, editor, presenter and reporter at Helsingborg Dagblad's TV channel, 24HD. Torbjörn also contributes to a Helsingborg IF-focused blog, which can be found here. He was kind enough to fill me in a bit on the kind of player the Red Bulls are getting:
I've been following Markus since he came to HIF from Angelholm in the second division.
The two last seasons he has become a starter, as right-sided defender. This year he started 26 of 30 games in the league, Allsvenskan, and took a place in central defence when the squad was in trouble. Maybe centre back is his best position right now (even if Markus wants to play right winger). 
He is not a favourite or a star among the fans, but he is always doing his job perfectly. Many were surprised that he got called up to the national team for January, but I think its logical. He is strong in the air, in possession and tactically. The weak part of his game is the touch with the ball, but its getting better season by season.
He is a clever guy, even off the pitch. He has been studying at university during his football career the last several years and I know that he was close to quitting football for a high position in the civil service. 
I really think he has earned this opportunity. The hardcore fans understand his choice, even if he leaves Helsingborg on a Bosman and the club not will get any cash.
This all sounds encouraging, and the fact that he is also comfortable at right back should give Hans Backe some added flexibility. From the accounts I've read Holgersson sounds like a very solid signing - and just what the doctor ordered for a defense that was mostly a disaster last season.
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