|Awad (C) celebrates after their 1-0 win over GAIS|
In a fitting end to a great season, Ahmed Awad has helped deliver an improbable Allsvenskan promotion to Dalkurd.
Dalkurd and Awad had limped towards the finish line- losing three of their four last games including a promotion clash to Brommapojkarna last week.
After third place Trelleborg dropped points in a 2-2 draw vs. Frej on Friday, Dalkurd knew that a point against relegation threatened GAIS would secure promotion to the Swedish top flight.
A Rawez Lawan goal was enough to seal the game and promotion for the Kurdish community of Sweden.
In a season plagued by injury, Awad played through pain to register 8 goals and 6 assists in 19 starts. The forward missed the entire preseason and was then injured in the lead-up to Palestine’s game vs. Bhutan in Thimphu.
Awad has been at the club since the 2010 season joining as an 18 year old from crosstown rivals IK Brage. A series of impressive performances earned him a move to IFK Varnamo in the second tier for the 2013 season.
He returned the following season, leading Dalkurd to a third place finish in 2014- one point short of a promotion playoff. In 2015, he was the fourth leading scorer of the Swedish third tier- with his 11 goals delivering promotion in spectacular style.
Dalkurd once again finished a point shy of a promotion playoff last season with Awad registering six goals and two assists.
Awad would not be denied in 2017 linking brilliantly with Richard Yarsuvat (a league leading 17 goals) and Iraq international Rawez Lawan (who also has six assists this season).
“To get promoted to Allsvenskan would be sick, just like a dream.” Awad said ahead of this week’s games.
“I remember when we were about to get promoted to Superettan two years ago. That alone was like a dream and I remember that I was thinking that I wanted to help Dalkurd get to Superettan. I have always felt that my chance of playing in Allsvenskan would be with Dalkurd. It is my ninth season here, so the club have become like a family to me. We have three games left and of course we need to focus on one game at the time. Now, this dream is about to become reality and if it comes true, it would be huge” Awad told Dalkurd’s official site.
Awad is the third Palestinian player to earn promotion to the Allsvenskan following in the footsteps of Imad Zatara who led Syrianska to the top flight in 2010 and Hosam Aiesh who did it with Östersunds in 2015.
With Kalmar securing their top flight status this week- Awad will join fellow national team players Mahmoud Eid and Hosam Aiesh in the Allsvenskan.