Superliga
Superliga 2010.svg
Founded1991
First season1991
CountryDenmark
ConfederationUEFA
Number of teams12
Level on pyramid1
Relegation toDanish 1st Division
Domestic cup(s)Danish Cup
International cup(s)UEFA Champions League
UEFA Europa League
UEFA Europa Conference League
Current championsCopenhagen (14th title)
(2021–22)
Most championshipsCopenhagen (14 titles)
Most appearancesRasmus Würtz (452)
Top goalscorerMorten "Duncan" Rasmussen (145)
TV partnersDomestic
Viaplay Group
(TV3+, TV3 Sport, TV3 MAX)
Discovery Networks Denmark
(Canal 9, Eurosport 2)
International
Eleven Sports
OneFootball
WebsiteSuperliga.dk
dbu.dk
Current: 2022–23 Danish Superliga

The Danish Superliga (Danish: Superligaen, pronounced [ˈsuˀpɐliːˌkɛˀn̩]) is the current Danish football championship tournament, and administered by the Danish Football Association. It is the highest football league in Denmark and is currently contested by 12 teams each year, with two teams relegated.

History

Founded in 1991, the Danish Superliga replaced the Danish 1st Division as the highest league of football in Denmark. From the start in 1991, 10 teams were participating. The opening Superliga season was played during the spring of 1991, with the ten teams playing each other twice for the championship title. From the summer of 1991, the tournament structure would stretch over two calendar years. The 10 teams would play each other twice in the first half of the tournament. In the following spring, the bottom two teams would be cut off, the points of the teams would be cut in half, and the remaining eight teams would once more play each other twice, for a total of 32 games in a season.

This practice was abandoned before the 1995–96 season, when the number of teams competing was increased to 12, playing each other thrice for 33 games per Superliga season. For the first season of this new structure, Coca-Cola became the name sponsor of the league, which was then named Coca-Cola Ligaen. After a single season under that name, Faxe Brewery became sponsors and the league changed its name to Faxe Kondi Ligaen. Before the 2001–02 season, Scandinavian Airlines System (SAS) became the head sponsor, and the name of the tournament changed to SAS Ligaen. From January 2015 the Danish Superliga is known as Alka Superliga, as the Danish insurance company Alka became name sponsor.[1]

Logos used for naming rights agreements for the league:

Structure

From 1996 through 2016, the league included 12 clubs which played each other three times. The two teams with the fewest points at the end of the season were relegated to the Danish 1st Division and replaced by the top two teams of that division. During this era, each team played every other team at least once at home and once away plus once more either at home or away. The top six teams of the previous season played 17 matches at home and 16 away while the teams in 7th to 10th place plus the two newly promoted teams played 16 matches at home and 17 away.

Following the 2015–16 season, the league was expanded to 14 teams, accomplished by relegating only the last-place finisher in that season and promoting the top three teams from the 1st division. The 2016–17 season was the first for the new league structure. It began with the teams playing a full home-and-away schedule, resulting in 26 matches for each team. At that time, the league split into a six-team championship playoff and an eight-team qualifying playoff. All teams' table points and goals carry over fully into the playoffs.

In the championship playoff, each team plays the others home and away again. The top team at the end of the playoff is Superliga champion and enters the Champions League in the second qualifying round. The second-place team enters the Europa League in the first qualifying round. The third-place team advances to a one-off playoff match for another Europa League place. If the winner of the Danish Cup finishes in the top three, the match will instead involve the fourth-place team.

The qualifying playoff is split into two groups, with the teams that finished the regular season in 7th, 10th, 11th, and 14th in one group and those finishing 8th, 9th, 12th, and 13th in the other. Each group plays home-and-away within its group. The top two teams from each group then enter a knockout tournament, with each match over two legs. If the Danish Cup winner is among the top two finishers in either playoff group, it is withdrawn from the knockout playoff and its opponent automatically advances to the tournament final. The winner of that tournament faces the third-place (or fourth-place) team from the championship playoff in a one-off match, with the winner entering the Europa League in the first qualifying round.

The bottom two teams from each group then contest a relegation playoff with several steps, centered on a separate four-team knockout playoff, also consisting totally of two-legged matches:

Following the 2019–20 season, The number of teams was reduced from 14 to 12 teams. It began with all 12 teams playing a full home-and-away schedule, resulting in 22 matches for each team. At that time, the league split into a six-team championship playoff and a six-team qualifying playoff. All teams' table points and goals carry over fully into the playoffs. In both playoff groups 6 Teams will playing a full home-and-away schedule, resulting in 10 matches (32 for the full season). The 2 bottom teams in the qualifying playoff, will be relegated to 1st Division, while the team who finishing 7th will be playing against the lowest placed team from The Championship playoff, who failed to qualifying directly to European Football, a single match, to decide the final European spot from Denmark.

Teams

Current teams (2022–23)

Club Finishing position
last season
First season in
top division
First season of
current spell in
top division
AaB 5th 1928–29 1987
AGF 10th 1918–19 2015–16
Brøndby 4th 1982 1982
Copenhagen 1st 1992–93 1992–93
Horsens 2nd in 1st Division 2005–06 2022–23
Lyngby 2nd in 1st Division 1979–80 2022–23
Midtjylland 2nd 2000–01 2000–01
Nordsjælland 9th 2002–03 2002–03
OB 8th 1927–28 1999–00
Randers 6th 1970 2011–12
Silkeborg 3rd 1988 2021–22
Viborg 7th 1981 2021–22

Winners

See also: List of Danish football champions

Seasons

Season Champions Performance
Pts Pld W D L GF GA GD
1991 Brøndby IF 26 18 10 6 2 26 15 +11
1991–92 Lyngby BK 32[2] 14 9 2 3 22 7 +15
1992–93 F.C. Copenhagen 32[2] 14 8 3 3 31 23 +8
1993–94 Silkeborg IF 31[2] 14 8 2 4 23 15 +8
1994–95 AaB 31[2] 14 7 4 3 30 13 +17
1995–96 Brøndby IF 67 33 20 7 6 71 32 +39
1996–97 Brøndby IF 68 33 20 8 5 64 39 +25
1997–98 Brøndby IF 76 33 24 4 5 81 33 +48
1998–99 AaB 64 33 17 13 3 65 37 +28
1999–2000 Herfølge BK 56 33 16 8 9 52 49 +3
2000–01 F.C. Copenhagen 63 33 17 12 4 55 27 +28
2001–02 Brøndby IF 69 33 20 9 4 74 28 +46
2002–03 F.C. Copenhagen 61 33 17 10 6 51 32 +19
2003–04 F.C. Copenhagen 68 33 20 8 5 56 27 +29
2004–05 Brøndby IF 69 33 20 9 4 61 23 +38
2005–06 F.C. Copenhagen 73 33 22 7 4 62 27 +35
2006–07 F.C. Copenhagen 76 33 23 7 3 60 23 +37
2007–08 AaB 71 33 22 5 6 60 38 +22
2008–09 F.C. Copenhagen 74 33 23 5 5 67 26 +41
2009–10 F.C. Copenhagen 68 33 21 5 7 61 22 +39
2010–11 F.C. Copenhagen 81 33 25 6 2 77 29 +48
2011–12 FC Nordsjælland 68 33 21 5 7 49 22 +27
2012–13 F.C. Copenhagen 65 33 18 11 4 62 32 +30
2013–14 AaB 62 33 18 8 7 60 38 +22
2014–15 FC Midtjylland 71 33 22 5 6 64 34 +30
2015–16 F.C. Copenhagen 71 33 21 8 4 62 28 +34
2016–17 F.C. Copenhagen 84 36 25 9 2 74 20 +54
2017–18 FC Midtjylland 85 36 27 4 5 80 39 +41
2018–19 F.C. Copenhagen 82 36 26 4 6 86 37 +49
2019–20 FC Midtjylland 82 36 26 4 6 61 29 +32
2020–21 Brøndby IF 61 32 19 4 9 58 38 +20
2021–22 F.C. Copenhagen 68 32 20 8 4 56 19 +37

Relegations

Season Relegated team(s)
1991 Ikast FS
1991–92 Vejle Boldklub
1992–93 Boldklubben Frem, Boldklubben 1909
1993–94 Viborg FF, B93
1994–95 Fremad Amager
1995–96 Ikast FS, Næstved BK
1996–97 Viborg FF, Hvidovre IF
1997–98 Ikast FS, Odense Boldklub
1998–99 Aarhus Fremad, B93
1999–00 Vejle Boldklub, Esbjerg fB
2000–01 Herfølge Boldklub, SønderjyskE
2001–02 Vejle Boldklub, Lyngby Boldklub
2002–03 Silkeborg IF, Køge BK
2003–04 Boldklubben Frem, AB
2004–05 Herfølge Boldklub, Randers FC
2005–06 SønderjyskE, Aarhus Gymnastikforening
2006–07 Vejle Boldklub, Silkeborg IF
2007–08 Viborg FF, Lyngby Boldklub
2008–09 AC Horsens, Vejle Boldklub
2009–10 AGF, HB Køge
2010–11 Randers FC, Esbjerg fB
2011–12 Lyngby Boldklub, HB Køge
2012–13 AC Horsens, Silkeborg IF
2013–14 AGF, Viborg FF
2014–15 FC Vestsjælland, Silkeborg IF
2015–16 Hobro IK
2016–17 Viborg FF, Esbjerg fB
2017–18 Lyngby Boldklub, Silkeborg IF, FC Helsingør
2018–19 Vendsyssel FF, Vejle Boldklub
2019–20 Hobro IK, Silkeborg IF, Esbjerg fB
2020–21 AC Horsens, Lyngby Boldklub
2021–22 Vejle Boldklub, SønderjyskE

Notable players

Top goalscorers

Season Tally Top scorer(s)
1991 11 Bent Christensen (Brøndby IF)
1991–92 17 Peter Møller (AaB)
1992–93 22 Peter Møller (AaB)
1993–94 18 Søren Frederiksen (Viborg FF)
1994–95 24 Erik Bo Andersen (AaB)
1995–96 20 Thomas Thorninger (AGF)
1996–97 26 Miklos Molnar (Lyngby BK)
1997–98 28 Ebbe Sand (Brøndby IF)
1998–99 23 Heine Fernandez (Viborg FF)
1999–00 16 Peter Lassen (Silkeborg IF)
2000–01 21 Peter Graulund (Brøndby IF)
2001–02 22 Peter Madsen (Brøndby IF) and Kaspar Dalgas (OB)
2002–03 18 Søren Frederiksen (Viborg FF) and Jan Kristiansen (Esbjerg fB)
2003–04 19 Steffen Højer and Mwape Miti (both OB), Mohamed Zidan (FC Midtjylland) and Tommy Bechmann (Esbjerg fB)
2004–05 20 Steffen Højer (OB)
2005–06 16 Steffen Højer (Viborg FF)
2006–07 19 Rade Prica (AaB)
2007–08 17 Jeppe Curth (AaB)
2008–09 16 Morten Nordstrand (F.C. Copenhagen) and Marc Nygaard (Randers FC)
2009–10 18 Peter Utaka (OB)
2010–11 25 Dame N'Doye (F.C. Copenhagen)
2011–12 18 Dame N'Doye (F.C. Copenhagen)
2012–13 18 Andreas Cornelius (F.C. Copenhagen)
2013–14 18 Thomas Dalgaard (Viborg FF)
2014–15 17 Martin Pusic (Esbjerg FB/ FC Midtjylland)
2015–16 18 Lukas Spalvis (AaB)
2016–17 23 Marcus Ingvartsen (FC Nordsjælland)
2017–18 22 Pål Alexander Kirkevold (Hobro IK)
2018–19 29 Robert Skov (F.C. Copenhagen)
2019–20 18 Ronnie Schwartz (Silkeborg IF/ FC Midtjylland)
2020–21 19 Mikael Uhre (Brøndby IF)
2021–22 17 Nicklas Helenius (Silkeborg IF)

All-Time topscorer(s)

The 10 most scoring players throughout the history of the Superliga. Latest update 22 July 2022.

Rank Topscorer(s) Goals Club(s)
1. Morten "Duncan" Rasmussen 145 AGF, Brøndby IF, AaB, FC Midtjylland
2. Søren Frederiksen 139 Silkeborg IF, Viborg FF, AaB
3. Peter Møller 135 AaB, Brøndby IF, FC København
4. Heine Fernandez 126 AB, FC København, Silkeborg IF, Viborg FF
5. Steffen Højer 124 OB, Viborg FF, AaB
6. Frank Kristensen 109 FC Midtjylland, Ikast fS, Randers FC
7. Peter Graulund 107 AGF, Brøndby IF, Vejle BK
8. Søren Andersen 101 AGF, OB, AaB
9. Nicklas Helenius 92 AaB, Silkeborg IF, OB, AGF
10. Dame N'Doye 90 FC København

Most capped players

See also: Category:Danish Superliga players

Twenty players with most Superliga appearances
Rank Player Appearances Club(s)
1 Rasmus Würtz 452 AaB, FC København, Vejle BK
2 Hans Henrik Andreasen 397 OB, Esbjerg fB, Hobro IK
3 Per Nielsen 394 Brøndby IF
4 Jakob Poulsen 390 Esbjerg fB, AGF, FC Midtjylland
5 Jimmy Nielsen 375 AaB, Vejle BK
6 Michael Hansen 371 Silkeborg IF, OB, Esbjerg fB, FC Midtjylland
Mogens Krogh 371 Ikast FS, Brøndby IF
8 Nicolai Stokholm 370 AB, OB, FC Nordsjælland
9 Arek Onyszko 363 Viborg FF, OB, FC Midtjylland
10 Johan Absalonsen 362 Brøndby IF, OB, FC København, AC Horsens, SønderjyskE
11 Michael Nonbo 355 Næstved IF, AGF, Viborg FF, SønderjyskE
Morten "Duncan" Rasmussen 355 AGF, Brøndby IF, AaB, FC Midtjylland
Jonas Borring 355 OB, FC Midtjylland, Randers FC, Brøndby IF, AC Horsens
14 Anders Møller Christensen 351 Næstved BK, OB, Esbjerg fB
15 Kasper Risgård 344 AaB, Silkeborg IF
16 Thomas Augustinussen 342 AaB
17 Jesper Hansen 341 FC Nordsjælland, Lyngby BK, FC Midtjylland, AGF
Jens Jessen 341 AaB, FC Midtjylland
Jakob Glerup 341 Viborg FF
20 Steffen Højer 339 Viborg FF, AaB, OB
As of 29/05/2022[3]

Most capped foreign players

Main article: List of foreign Danish Superliga players

Thirty foreign players with most Superliga appearances
Rank Player Nationality Appearances Club(s)
1 Arek Onyszko  Poland 362 Viborg FF, OB, FC Midtjylland
2 Jerry Lucena  Philippines 334 Esbjerg fB, AGF Aarhus
3 Karim Zaza  Morocco 322 FC København, OB, Brøndby IF, AaB
4 Rilwan Hassan  Nigeria 296 FC Midtjylland, SønderjyskE
5 Todi Jónsson  Faroe Islands 243 Lyngby BK, FC København
6 Pierre Bengtsson  Sweden 242 FC Nordsjælland, FC København
7 Andrew Tembo  Zambia 218 OB
8 Kolja Afriyie  Germany 203 Esbjerg fB, FC Midtjylland
9 Izunna Uzochukwu  Nigeria 201 FC Midtjylland, OB
10 Espen Ruud  Norway 197 OB
11 Quincy Antipas  Zimbabwe 191 HB Køge, SønderjyskE, Brøndby IF, Hobro IK
12 Rúrik Gíslason  Iceland 181 Viborg FF, OB, FC København
13 Mwape Miti  Zambia 178 OB
14 Hallgrímur Jónasson  Iceland 174 SønderjyskE, OB, Lyngby BK
15 Bajram Fetai  Macedonia 167 Silkeborg IF, FC Nordsjælland, Lyngby BK
16 Rawez Lawan  Sweden 168 AC Horsens, FC Nordsjælland
17 Dan Eggen  Norway 167 BK Frem, Brøndby IF
18 Andreas Johansson  Sweden 162 AaB, OB
19 César Santin  Brazil 161 FC København
20 Abdul Sule  Nigeria 160 AB, AC Horsens
Jacob Rinne  Sweden 160 AaB
As at the end of season 2021–22[4]

Attendances

Season Average Total Max Min
1991 3,937 354,348 13,935 712
1991–92 4,428 646,510 16,500 1,014
1992–93 5,023 733,299 22,862 484
1993–94 4,739 691,855 26,679 475
1994–95 5,930 865,755 36,623 487
1995–96 5,689 1,126,414 39,640 704
1996–97 5,318 1,052,922 28,491 585
1997–98 5,519 1,092,688 33,124 939
1998–99 4,974 984,874 37,940 180
1999–2000 5,838 1,155,917 28,818 1,493
2000–01 5,837 1,155,662 40,281 1,003
2001–02 5,727 1,133,920 40,186 314
2002–03 7,307 1,446,752 40,254 800
2003–04 7,980 1,580,011 41,005 1,011
2004–05 8,589 1,700,532 40,654 843
2005–06 7,957 1,575,399 41,201 1,307
2006–07 8,108 1,605,367 40,463 1,799
2007–08 8,499 1,682,791 32,153 1,035
2008–09 8,815 1,745,308 32,856 1,609
2009–10 8,315 1,646,405 30,191 707
2010–11 7,049 1,395,616 28,387 1,017
2011–12 7,103 1,406,462 25,651 1,059
2012–13 6,760 1,338,465 33,215 0 [a]
2013–14 7,929 1,570,027 32,846 1,656
2014–15 6,932 1,372,511 32,526 1,201
2015–16 7,253 1,436,188 29,178 1,327
2016–17 6,002 1,500,380 26,686 1,044
2017–18 5,880 1,469,980 28,410 568
2018–19 6,581 1,618,965 33,134 1,012
2019–20 4,764 1,152,832 29,310 0 [b]
2020–21 1,193 229,136 10,966 0 [c]
2021–22 8,636 1,658,078 35,463 1,702
  1. ^ Brøndby IF got a two matches ban on spectators due to unrest at a cup game against FC København.[5]
  2. ^ Due to the COVID-19 pandemic some games were played without spectators and some games were played with a reduced amount allowed.[6]
  3. ^ Due to the COVID-19 pandemic some games were played without spectators and some games were played with a reduced amount allowed.[7]

See also

Notes

  1. ^ "Officielt: Superligaen bliver til Alka Superligaen".
  2. ^ a b c d Tally includes points carried over from the first half of the season.
  3. ^ "FLEST KAMPE, ALLTIME". superstats.dk. Retrieved 20 October 2016.
  4. ^ "UDLÆNDINGE MED FLEST SPILLEDE KAMPE, ALL TIME". superstats.dk. Retrieved 17 August 2013.
  5. ^ Davidsen, Martin (25 March 2013). "DIF slår fast: Brøndby uden tilskuere i to kampe". Tipsbladet.
  6. ^ Muminovic, Arnela (5 June 2020). "Regeringen vil tillade 500 tilskuere til Superliga-kampe". Danmarks Radio.
  7. ^ Paaske, Søren (15 September 2020). "Nye corona-restriktioner: Færre tilskuere til Superliga-kampe". BT.