Gefle IF

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Gefle IF
Gefle IF logo.svg
Full nameGefle Idrottsförening
Founded5 December 1882; 136 years ago (1882-12-05) as Gefle SK
GroundGavlevallen, Gävle
ChairmanMalin Rogström
Head coachMarcus Bengtsson
LeagueDivision 1 Norra
2019Division 1 Norra, 11th
WebsiteClub website

Gefle Idrottsförening, also known simply as Gefle IF, Gefle (pronounced [¹jɛːvlɛ], as if spelled Gävle), or locally Gif (pronounced [¹ɡɪfː]), are a Swedish professional football club based in Gävle. The club is affiliated with Gestriklands Fotbollförbund[1] and play their home games at Gavlevallen since the 2015 season.[2] The club colours are blue and white. Formed on 5 December 1882 as Gefle SK, the club have played fifteen seasons in Sweden's highest football league Allsvenskan,[3] with the first season being 1933–34. The club is currently playing in Division 1, the third tier of Swedish football.


Gefle IF was originally formed as Gefle SK in December 1882 but changed the name to its current form only months after.[4] The name "Gefle" is one of the old variations of spelling for the town Gävle which was used from the 1500s to the early 1900s.[5] The multisports club mainly focused on winter sports during its early years, with rowing being their only summertime activity. In 1896 the club started having regular football training sessions under the guidance of an English accountant by the name of Robert Carrick. Born in England, he had grown up in Gävle but returned to his homeland for a few years as a student. There he had picked up the new sport which he brought back with him to Sweden and introduced at Gefle IF.[4]

The Gefle IF team of 1902 with Robert Carrick holding the Rosenska Pokalen-trophy.

The club found early success at the turn of the century by winning one of the biggest swedish cups at the time, Rosenska Pokalen, three times.[6] Due to high travel costs Gefle declined to participate in the other major swedish football tournament, Svenska Mästerskapet, during those years. Therefore, the clubs golden generation never got the chance to play against the nations other dominant team at the time, Örgryte IS from Gothenburg.

An ever-increasing number of football clubs were starting up in the early 1900s and Gefle were not able to maintain its dominant position among all the new competition. When the first swedish league Svenska Serien started in 1910 Gefle IF were not included and when they entered into the second tier of the league system in 1912–13 they finished dead last.[7]

A chart showing the progress of Gefle IF through the swedish football league system. The different shades of gray represent league divisions.

During the rest of the 20th century the club mostly moved up and down between the second and third level of the Swedish football league system. They only managed two short lived stints at the top level Allsvenskan, one in the early 1930s and one in the early 1980s. Between the 1979 and 1981 season Gefle IF and Brynäs IF merged and played under the name Gefle IF/Brynäs, but the merger split up again in 1982.[6] In 2004 manager Kenneth Rosén was finally able to bring the club back to the top division after finishing second in the 2004 Superettan. Rosén had missed part of the previous season due to illness and after the club was promoted he again had to be hospitalized and died soon after.[8] Long-time club servant Per "Pelle" Olsson immediately stepped in and took over as manager during the off-season and managed to keep the club at the top level. Olsson would remain as the manager until 2014 when he was announced as Djurgårdens IF:s new manager.


Gefle IF supporters during an away trip in 2012 to Råsunda Stadium where they played against AIK.

Due to their status as a second or third division club the Gefle supporters were late starters in creating an organized supporters club. After some fledgeling attempts in the mid 1990s when the interest in traveling to away games increased, the "Sky Blues" was finally founded in 2001 as the official supporter group.[9]

In 2009 Gefle IF caused controversy among its fans by changing the sky blue home shirt to white, the color which the club played in during its first 80 years. This caused groups of fans to boycott the singing sections of the home stadium. Eventually before the start of the 2011 season a compromise was reached where they kept the white shirt for their home kit but brought back the sky blue as their new away kit.[10][11] Further compromise was then reached for the 2015 Allsvenskan season when a new sky blue and white striped kit was launched, inspired by the Argentina national football team. A decision that satisfied both the fans and the club.[12]


Gefle IF played at Strömvallen, built in 1923, for 92 years. On 30 May 2013 it was announced that the club had agreed with Gävle Municipality to build a new stadium in the Sätraåsen area of Gävle. The stadium, Gavlevallen, was ready for the 2015 season.[2]

European Cups History[edit]

Season Competition Round Club Home Away Aggregate
2006–07 UEFA Cup First qualifying round Wales Llanelli 1–2 0–0 1–2
2010–11 UEFA Europa League First qualifying round Faroe Islands NSÍ Runavík 2–1 2–0 4–1
Second qualifying round Georgia (country) FC Dinamo Tbilisi 1–2 1–2 2–4
2013–14 UEFA Europa League First qualifying round Estonia Narva Trans 5–1 3–0 8–1
Second qualifying round Cyprus Anorthosis 4–0 0–3 4–3
Third qualifying round Azerbaijan Qarabağ FK 0–2 0–1 0–3

None of Gefle's appearances in European competition have been due to cup wins or their league positions (11th, 10th and 11th in the respective years). Instead they have qualified through the Fair Play initiative each time.[13]


First-team squad[edit]

As of 26 April 2019[14]

Note: Flags indicate national team as defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

No. Position Player
2 Sweden DF Jacob Ejerblad
3 Sweden DF Albin Lohikangas [15][circular reference]
5 Sweden DF Nahom Zeru
6 Sweden DF Frej Engberg
7 Brazil FW Júlio César Fernandes
8 Sweden MF Adrian Bjelkendal Haaranen
9 Sweden FW Grace Tanda [16][circular reference]
10 Sweden MF Melvin Mårtensson Almevid
11 Sweden FW Nils Nilsson
12 United States GK Jake McGuire
No. Position Player
13 Sweden MF Mans Berggren
16 Sweden MF Isac Rojas
16 Sweden DF Kevin Persson
20 Sweden MF Sebastian Sandland
21 Sweden MF Linus Mattsson
22 Sweden GK William Lindkvist
23 Sweden DF Axel Norén
42 Guinea DF Amadou Kalabane
44 Spain MF Iu Ranera Grau








  1. ^ "Distrikten Kontaktuppgifter och tävlingar – Gestriklands Fotbollförbund –". Retrieved 2011-01-10.
  2. ^ a b "Pressmeddelande: Förenat framtidsfokus för fotbollen!". (in Swedish). Gefle IF. 30 May 2013. Archived from the original on 6 November 2014. Retrieved 30 May 2013.
  3. ^ "Maratontabell". Retrieved 2013-07-31.
  4. ^ a b "När Gefle IF hade Sveriges bästa fotbollslag". Retrieved 2013-07-27.
  5. ^ "Gävle stads namn". Retrieved 2013-07-27.
  6. ^ a b "Historik". Retrieved 2013-07-27.
  7. ^ "När Gefle IF var bäst i Sverige". Retrieved 2013-07-30.
  8. ^ "Gefle IF:s tränare död". Retrieved 2013-07-31.
  9. ^ "Historik Supporterklubben Sky Blues". Retrieved 2013-07-31.
  10. ^ "Supportergrupp bojkottar GIF". Archived from the original on 2013-07-31. Retrieved 2013-07-31.
  11. ^ "GEFLEBLOGGEN: En gång himmelsblå alltid himmelsblå". Retrieved 2013-07-31.
  12. ^ "GIF-fansen: "Tröjan känns helt rätt"". Retrieved 2015-02-15.
  13. ^ "Gefle till Europa League-kval". Retrieved 2013-07-30.
  14. ^ "Spelartruppen" (in Swedish). Gefle IF. Retrieved 6 July 2013.
  15. ^ sv:Albin Lohikangas
  16. ^ sv:Grace Tanda
  17. ^ "4–4–2 Gefle IF Database". Gefle Dagblad. Archived from the original on 2013-10-13. Retrieved 2013-10-10.
  18. ^ [1]

External links[edit]