In what was being described as the first major sporting event since the shocking events in Norway last weekend, football always came to second to a show of defiance from the Norwegian people who are determined to carry on their peaceful way of life and not retreat in fear.

The attendance was testament to that with 4,500 thousand fans there to watch the Whites – not the most impressive figure by English standards, but considering Sandefjord’s record attendance is 8,000, it was an incredible turnout for a midweek friendly.

The game itself produced few talking points. Like most pre-season friendlies, the pace was slow and the goal-mouth action limited.

Leeds however were gifted an opportunity to take a first half lead when they were awarded a penalty for a foul on Ross McCormack. The Scottish striker decided he would be the one to take it but fired wide to record his second pre-season penalty miss.

It took 83 minutes for the deadlock to be broken when Sandefjord scored against the run of the play to spark life into a home support who were massively outnumbered by a mix of travelling and Norwegian Leeds United supporters.

Ramon Nunez however managed to level things for Leeds to cap off another impressive pre-season performance. The Honduran’s display was undoubtedly the biggest positive Whites fans will take from the game and one that could see him in the starting line-up for opening day against Southampton.

Simon Grayson post-match interview (courtesy of mojoluafc)

SG interview post Sandefjord game by Back2basics

A pre-season friendly seems incredibly trivial at times like these. The events of last weekend sent shockwaves all around the world and I’d like to add my own message to Norwegian Leeds United fans and indeed everyone in Norway at this time. Through adversity, we’ve heard nothing but reports of your countries staggering resolve. The determination to continue your peaceful way of life without fear of those who unjustifiably threaten it is a lesson from which we can all learn. I’m sure I speak on behalf of everyone reading this blog when I say, our thoughts are with you all. Marching on Together!

Final score: Sandefjord 1-1 Leeds United (Nunez)

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