Swansea City fans guide to Malmo

While our International Ground Guide is undergoing some maintenance ahead of the new season, we thought we'd provide our usual service of advice and information for travelling supporters in brief blog form.

Once up and running again our ground guide will cover all manner of information from travel options to hotel advice, eating and drinking suggestions to practical tips on getting around, along with safety and security advice and anything else we think will be of use to travelling supporters. 

In the meantime, while the below might not necessarily have all the information you'll be after if you're heading out to Sweden this week, we're always available to help - just drop us an email if you have any questions.

We'll do our best to find out what you need to know, either from our own vast experience in covering England and Wales games abroad, or from our friends at Football Supporters Europe. 

The Stadium

Malmo play at the Swedbank Stadion (although for UEFA sponsorship reasons this is also known as Malmo New Stadion) a new-build 21,000 all-seater stadium adjacent to the site of the club's former home.

Located on Eric Perssons Vag to the south of the city centre, it is easily reachable by public transport (bus routes 3, 5, 6 and 34 run past the ground) and the nearest station is Triangeln, which is around a 5-10 minute walk to the north of the stadium, next to Pildamms park. Trains run on both the Pagatag (Swedish commuter) and Oresund (regional/suburban) train routes, including from Copenhagen. 

A taxi from the city centre to the ground should only take around 10 minutes, depending on matchday traffic. 

For Swedish league matches the ground has 6,000 standing spaces, but these are removed for UEFA matches. Away fans are typically housed in the EOn stand, which is partly terraced, behind the goal at the southern end of the stadium.

The main Carlsberg Stand behind the goal at the northern end houses most of the home season ticket holders, and is the most vocal section of the ground. The picture above is taken from the Carlsberg Stand looking towards the away section.

The Team

Malmo are one of the most decorated clubs in Swedish football history - they have won the Swedish Cup on 14 occasions and the Allsvenskan league 19 times. Fans of a certain vintage will also recall that Malmo reached the European Cup final in 1979, losing out to Trevor Francis' sole strike in a 1-0 win for Nottingham Forest at Munich's Olimpiastadion.

Slightly younger fans may well recall that current England boss Roy Hodgson managed the side for 5 years in the 1980s, winning five titles and two cups between 1985 and 1989. Hodgson is still revered by fans of the club, with a section of the ground unofficially named in his honour (Roy's Corner, in the Carlsberg Stand).

The club has been home to such players as Martin Dahlin, Stefan Schwarz, Patrik Andersson and Zlatan Ibrahimovic in recent years, although things haven't gone so well for Malmo since Hodgson left in '89 - the club has only won two titles, in 2004 and most recently in 2010. 

Malmo finished third in last year's Allsvenskan, just three points off the top, behind BK Hacken and IF Elfsborg. In the 2013 season, which has been underway since late March, Malmo are second just after the halfway stage, two points behind Helsingborgs. 

The City

If you are staying in Malmo, then most of the nightlife is to be found around the city's three main squares - Gustav Adolf's (Gustav Adolfs torg), the Main Square (Stortorget) and Little Square (Lilla torg). A pedestrianised street connects Gustav Adolf's torg with the other two squares, and a range of cafés and restaurants can be found in the streets just off the main thoroughfare.

You might consider taking out a second mortgage if you're going to drink around here, however. More budget options can be found around Möllevångstorget (a square to the south of the main city centre). Here you'll find cheaper food, typically Asian and Middle Eastern to cater to the more alternative and immigrant community.

Malmo Stortorget2If you're going sightseeing during your day in Malmo, you might want to start by checking out the three main squares, the statue of King Karl X Gustav and the city hall which are located in Stortorget (pictured left), or Malmohus Castle, a 15th century castle located to the west of the city that now houses a history and art museum, as well as large gardens. 

To see how the above all fits together, and where the stadium and train stations are in relation to the city centre, check out this handy Google Map of Malmo.

Due to its size, range of accommodation options, price and proximity, however, we expect many Swansea City fans to actually stay in Copenhagen rather than Malmo itself. While Copenhagen is an expensive city by British standards, Malmo is positively eye-watering. It's not unusual for Swedes to do their socialising across the Oresund in the Danish capital, and the transport links between the two are good. 

In Copenhagen, Indre By, or ‘the inner city’ is where you’ll find most of the bars, restaurants and nightlife. The area is the old fortified part of the city, and many buildings survive from Medieval times. Rådhuspladsen, Slotsholmen, Kongens Nytorv and Nørreport act as the ‘corners’ of the square inner city, and Østerport, Nørreport, and Vesterport (namely eastern, northern and western gates) represent the old entrances to the original city of Copenhagen.

There are quite a few Irish pubs in Copenhagen, which usually prove popular with visiting fans. The Dubliner is one of the largest Irish pubs, to be found at Amagertov 5, Strøget. The Globe is to be found at Nørregade 43-45, close to the Nørreport Station. Kennedy’s Bar is located at Gammel Kongevej 23.