Tippeligaen is a Norwegian top tier football division also known as the Eliteserien which translates to Elite League. Tippeligaen specializes in developing players, such as 15-year-old Martin Ødegaard, league’s youngest goalscorer ever, who was just called up to the Norwegian national team.
There are 16 teams competing for the title of league winners. It established a relegation-promotion system where the last two teams are directly relegated to the second tier competition – Norwegian First Division, while the third team from the bottom joins a play-off involving the teams who finished third, fourth and fifth in the First Division in the quest for the last spot in the best Norwegian league.
Number of teams: 16
Level on the pyramid: 1
Domestic cup: Norwegian Cup
International cup: Champions League, Europa League
Current champions: Strømsgodset IF
Average range of annual salaries: 70,000 € – 90,000 €
Transfer window: 8th January – 31st March, 15th July – 11th August
Season duration: March – November
Number of allowed foreign players (per team): maximum 9 non-homegrown players
Number of foreign players: 130
Average stadium attendances: 6,829 (2013)
During the course of a season, each club plays the others twice, home and away, for a total of 30 games for each club, and a total of 240 league games in a season. The season starts in late March and lasts until early November. The 16th May round which is played a day before Norway’s Constitution Day is known as the National Day of Football and it averages a higher attendance of the league’s matches compared to other rounds.
Rosenborg has won the most titles since the league’s inception and has 22 wins, followed by Fredrikstad with 9 and Viking with 8 wins.
A miraculous youngster playing in the league at 15!
While the average age of players in the league is fairly high (24,6 years) there’s a plethora of young talent that get an early chance to prove their worth against the best in the country. Recently Tippeligaen unearthed another diamond who broke the record of the youngest debutant in the league at 15. Martin Ødegaard is playing for Strømsgodset, the current Champions.
A month after his debut he became the league’s youngest goalscorer ever and today he is with the Norway national team preparing for a friendly match against United Arab Emirates. If he gets to play he’ll become Norway’s youngest player ever. For reference, he was born well after France won their home World Cup in 1998.
Tippeligaen is developing football players
Clubs can transfer players in two transfer windows that range from January 8th to March 31st and from July 15th to August 11th. The average annual salaries in Tippeligaen range from 70,000 to 90,000 €. There are currently 130 foreign players in the league, mostly coming from Denmark, Finland and Iceland. Clubs are allowed to have at most 9 non-homegrown players in the team, while at least two players in the squad have to have trained at the club.
Between Tippeligaen teams or other Norwegian teams with Tippeligaen teams: 34%
From abroad to Tippeligaen: 32%
From Tippeligaen to abroad: 34%
To Tippeligaen (from countries):
Sweden, Netherlands, England: all 14%
From Tippeligaen (to countries):
Denmark, Sweden: both 38%
Judging by the talent and the transfers it can be said that Tippeligaen specializes in developing players, since the transfer revenue of players leaving the league is far greater that the transfer expenses for players joining the league. Most players who transferred to Tippeligaen this season came from the second tier First Division (28,5%). From other transfer arrivals 23,5% have simply exchanged teams in the league while 9% have arrived from Sweden and 7% from Iceland. Depatures paint a similar picture as 27% left the league to join teams in the First Division, while 12% transferred to Sweden and a joint 8% went to Iceland and Denmark respectively.
Country population: 5,136,700
Average salary (€): 5,250€/month
Tax rate (gross vs net): 27%
National currency (value in € and $): Norwegian Krone (NOK) = 0.12€ = 0.16$
Average temperature, humidity and rainfall during the season: 11C, 74%, 70mm
Food: Fish, game (animals hunted for food), bread
Most popular sports: Ice hockey, winter sports, football, handball
Transport (domestic flights): Airports in all major cities