Amini vs Mabil to avoid Danish Superliga relegation

Mustafa Amini AGF Danish Superliga
The two Denmark-based Australians are likely to play key roles as AGF face Esbjerg in a two-legged relegation play-off

A quartet of Australians will face off in the Danish Superliga on Sunday as they look to save their respective clubs from the "catastrophe" of relegation.

Mustafa Amini and Chris Ikonomidis of AGF will be hoping to overcome Awer Mabil and Brent McGrath's Esbjerg in a two-legged play-off, with the winning club set to take a step towards securing their spot in the Superliga for 2017-18.

Amini and Mabil are likely to start for their respective clubs, while Ikonomidis will probably have to accept a place on the bench for AGF and McGrath appears unlikely to be included in Esbjerg's squad at all.

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Amini stars in AGF debut

On loan from FC Midtjylland, Mabil (4 goals) is Esbjerg's second leading scorer this season and leads the club for assists with six.

Amini is AGF's second leading scorer too with five goals, while he also has three assists.

AGF will enter Sunday's first leg in Esbjerg in decent form - they have won their past three matches - and Amini hopes that momentum will see them triumph.

Mustafa Amini AGF Danish Superliga

Mustafa Amini, AGF

"Given our form from the last couple of games with three wins in a row, hopefully that leads into the coming games," Amini told Goal.

"It will be a catastrophe to be relegated but right now we have two games coming up. I'm just concentrating on these two important games and it's in our own hands, so we will do everything to make sure it won't be us."

Ikonomidis targets goals and Socceroos recall

AGF will host the second leg against Esbjerg on Wednesday, and Amini and Co. have an edge from previous meetings this season, having won 6-2 at home in October and drawing 2-2 away in August.

The Superliga has introduced a new competition structure this season, including a convoluted relegation process.

The bottom four clubs have been split into two play-offs.

The winners will meet each other in the next round, with the winner of that two-legged tie avoiding relegation.

McGrath backs Mabil for Socceroos

The losers from Esbjerg versus AGF and Viborg versus Horsens will also meet, with the loser of that two-legged play-off to drop down into the second tier.

The remaining two clubs - effectively 12th and 13th in the 14-team league - will play second and third from the 1st Division in promotion-relegation play-offs.


AGF are arguably the biggest club involved in the battle to avoid the drop - they are based in Denmark's second-largest city Aarhus - and Amini hopes that will make a difference.

"Our fans were amazing at home last week with almost 16,000 fans turning up [to watch a 1-0 win over Viborg] and I think that helped getting the clean sheet and three points," the Socceroos midfielder said.