||This article's lead section may not adequately summarize key points of its contents. (October 2013)|
Toivonen with PSV Eindhoven in 2010
|Full name||Nils Ola Toivonen|
|Date of birth||3 July 1986|
|Place of birth||Degerfors, Sweden|
|Height||1.89 m (6 ft 2 1⁄2 in)|
|Playing position||Attacking Midfielder/Striker|
|* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only and correct as of 7 November 2013.
† Appearances (Goals).
His father was born in Finland and emigrated to Degerfors to work in a factory. Toivonen started his career at Degerfors, where he became involved in their campaign in 2005 to avoid relegation from Superettan.
He was then bought by Örgryte, and their manager Zoran Lukić. The first, and only, season in Örgryte ended sadly. Lukić was sacked, and Örgryte finished last in Allsvenskan, and thus was relegated to Superettan. In November 2006, he won the "Newcomer of the Year" award at the annual Swedish football awards.
He soon signed a four-year contract with Malmö FF, in a transfer worth more than $1.1 million. He became Malmö's second most expensive player of all time (only Brazilian international Afonso Alves cost Malmö more money, when the club bought him for approximately $1.3 million in 2004, also from Örgryte). In the 2007 season, Toivonen's first at Malmö, the club finished 9th in Allsvenskan and Toivonen scored three goals. The 2008 season went somewhat better for Malmö, finishing 6th, and this was the absolute breakthrough for Toivonen. In 27 games, he managed to score 14 goals as well as seven assists. This drew the attention of some Premier League and Eredivisie clubs, most notably West Ham United and PSV Eindhoven.
Toivonen signed a contract with PSV Eindhoven in early 2009. The transfer fee was, according to some source, €3.5 million, and according to other sources €4.5 million. He received a red card in a February 2009 match against FC Volendam, which sidelined him for two matches. His first half season in the Netherlands, saw Toivonen score 6 goals in 14 appearances for his new club.
On 8 November 2009, Toivonen scored four out of five goals against ADO Den Haag in a 5–1 win, scoring a hat trick in the first 42 minutes of the game. His first full season in the Eredivise proved very successful, adapting quickly, scoring 13 goals.
The first game of the new season kicked off on 7 August 2010 and saw PSV head to the Abe Lenstra Stadion to face Heerenveen. Toivonen struck two second half goals, before Orlando Engelaar added a third, helping to secure a comfortable 3–1 victory. 14 August 2010 saw Toivonen net his second hat trick for PSV, scoring three goals in a 6–0 win over De Graafschap. He added the third goal in a 3–1 win against NEC Nijmegen on 11 September that helped his side climb to first in the Eredivisie rankings. 24 October saw his side record a memorable 10–0 win over rivals Feyenoord at the Philips Stadion. Toivonen scored the first of six goals in the second half. On 4 December Toivonen added two goals to his account in a 5–2 win over Heracles Almelo.
In PSV's second game back following the winter break, Toivonen netted the equalizing goal in a 2–1 win against Willem II. A month later on 20 February 2011, Toivonen scored the third goal, in a 4–1 home win against NAC Breda that saw PSV move two points clear at the top of the Eredivisie. A crucial game against SC Heerenveen on 10 April saw Toivonen return to the squad. He started on the bench, coming on as a 77th minute substitute for Zakaria Labyad. Toivonen scored PSV's second goal, deep into stoppage time, securing a 2–2 draw. On 24 April, PSV travelled to Rotterdam to play Feyenoord at De Kuip. After embarrassingly losing 10–0 in the first meeting of the season, Feyenoord responded by winning 3–1, Toivonen scored the only goal for the Boerens, ending PSV's title hopes. The 2010–11 campaign saw Toivonen score 15 Eredivisie goals and 3 Europa League goals for PSV, making him the club's second leading goalscorer of the season behind Balázs Dzsudzsák.
With strike partner Balázs Dzsudzsák leaving PSV to join Russian Premier League side Anzhi Makhachkala, Toivonen was required to fill in and contribute with more goals for the new season. Toivonen scored his first goal of the season in PSV's 3–0 win over ADO Den Haag on 21 August. He followed this effort up with another goal in his side's 5–0 thrashing of Austrian Bundesliga outfit SV Ried in the qualifying stages of the Europa League. PSV and Toivonen continued their rich goal-scoring form, as they hammered Excelsior 6–1 on 28 August with Toivonen netting a brace.
Due to injuries, Toivonen only made 17 appearances in which he scored eight times. At the end of the season, PSV wanted to sell Toivonen as he had refused to extend his contract which would expire in the summer of 2014. Norwich City showed interest in the player, but preferred countryman Johan Elmander after Toivonen had been dawling too long in the opinion of the club.
Although both PSV and Toivonen were dissatisfied after a transfer had failed, Toivonen made 14 appearances in which he scored once. In the winter break PSV announced that Toivonen would not play a single match for PSV in the second half of the season. Both the player and the club wanted to disband.
On 21 August 2007, he scored a hat trick (including 2 penalties) for Sweden U21 against Wales U21 in a 4–3 friendly defeat. He was a member of the U-21 national team at the 2009 European Championship in Sweden and scored three times in the competition against Italy U21, Serbia U21, and a superb freekick against England U21 which contributed to a comeback from 3–0 down to 3–3 with Toivonen scoring the second goal.
Leading up to the World Cup in South Africa, Sweden played Bosnia and Herzegovina in a friendly on 29 May. Toivonen was included in the starting lineup, as Sweden were without striker Zlatan Ibrahimović. Toivonen scored the opening goal in the 44th minute, giving Sweden a lead at half time. This goal was Toivonen's first at international level. Blackburn Rovers defender Martin Olsson scored a brace in the second half, leading Sweden to a 4–2 win. On 11 August 2010, Toivonen started for the national side in a friendly against Scotland at the Råsunda Stadium in Stockholm. Toivonen grabbed Sweden's third goal in the 55th minute, his second international goal, helping to seal a 3–0 win for the home side.
- Scores and results list Sweden's goal tally first.
|1.||29 May 2010||Råsunda Stadium, Solna||Bosnia-Herzegovina||1–0||4–2||Friendly|
|2.||11 August 2010||Råsunda Stadium, Solna||Scotland||3–0||3–0||Friendly|
|3.||3 June 2011||Zimbru Stadium, Chişinău||Moldova||1–0||4–1||Euro 2012 qualifier|
|4.||11 October 2011||Råsunda Stadium, Solna||Netherlands||3–2||3–2||Euro 2012 qualifier|
|5.||30 May 2012||Gamla Ullevi, Gothenburg||Iceland||2–0||3–2||Friendly|
|6.||5 June 2012||Råsunda Stadium, Solna||Serbia||1–0||2–1||Friendly|
|7.||5 March 2014||Ankara 19 Mayıs Stadium, Ankara||Turkey||1–1||1–2||Friendly|
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- Flying start PSV in Eredivisie | The Soccer Room
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- Eredivisie Round-up: Ajax back in title race as Twente & PSV drop points – Goal.com[dead link]
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- [dead link]
- "Norwich verkiest Elmander boven treuzelende Toivonen". Voetbal International. Retrieved 19 August 2013.
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- Forsyth, Roddy (11 August 2010). "Sweden 3 Scotland 0: match report". The Daily Telegraph (London).
- "Sweden 3–0 Scotland". BBC News. 11 August 2010.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Ola Toivonen.|
- Ola Toivonen stats in The Guardian (English)
- Ola Toivonen stats at Soccer Terminal (English)
- Ola Toivonen profile at Svensk Fotboll (Swedish)
- Ola Toivonen profile at ESPN (English)