- Nationality: Norwegian
- Age: 21
- Date of birth: 12/03/1999
- Current club: Stabæk Fotball
- Career: Stabæk Fotball
- Position: Defensive Midfield
- Secondary Positions: Centre Midfield
- Preferred foot: Left
Emil Bohinen is a 21 year old defensive midfielder who currently plays for Stabæk Fotball in the Norwegian Eliteserien. Stabæk are a mid table side in Norway and finished on 8th place in the league last season. Emil Bohinen has played over 50 matches for his team and has been capped for all the Norwegian youth teams. Emil is the son of Lars Bohinen, who played for teams like Nottingham Forest and Blackburn Rovers.
Emil Bohinen plays as the most defensive midfielder for Stabæk mostly behind Tortol Lumanza, who plays as a box-to-box midfielder, and the more attacking minded Hugo Vetlesen. The young Norwegian has been linked with multiple teams in the Ligue 1, Leeds United, Brighton and Parma. Earlier this year Bohinen was being trialed by Sheffield United.
Bohinen is quite a sturdy and tall defensive midfielder, but despite his main strengths probably lie in his offensive and technical qualities. Bohinen is a crucial part in the build-up play for Stabæk, averaging 40.47 passes per game, sometimes picking up the ball as a third centre back and sometimes sitting a bit further up the pitch creating offensive overloads.
The Norwegian midfielder is very comfortable with the ball at his feet and dictates the pace of the game for his team. He has a great first touch and is very composed under pressure, scanning the area around him well before taking a first touch. He has a high turning speed, allowing him to easily pass a player who is putting pressure on him. He doesn’t do it that often, but Bohinen has great dribbling and ball carrying abilities. With his progressive runs he creates a lot of space for his teams. The 21 year old is very strong on the ball and has great agility, which helps him a lot with his runs.
Bohinen’s ball distribution is also excellent, as he has an average passing accuracy of 90.7% this season. His short passing is very neat, but he also has the ability to open up the play with a nice long ball. This season he plays 12.66 progressive passes on average with an accuracy of 82.7%. Bohinen is left footed, but seems reasonably comfortable with his right foot as well, and uses the different parts of his feet very well.
In the final third, Bohinen doesn’t really play that big of a role for Stabæk. This season Bohinen has scored one goal so far, from a penalty kick, and gave one assist from one of his corner kicks. From his free kicks it seems that he has good shooting, but he takes less than one shot on goal per game on average. But as the most defensive midfielder in a 4-3-3 formation scoring goals and giving assists obviously isn’t really his task to begin with.
Tactically might be were Bohinen really stands out. Not only in his own half defensively, but also in the half of his opponent. Often when Stabæk lose the ball, instead of regrouping, they like to counter-press and Bohinen is a pivotal part in that process. He reads the game very well and anticipates when he needs to. This season Bohinen averages 7.19 counter pressing recoveries per game in the Eliteserien.
Defensively Bohinen is also a very solid player tactically. He sits just in front of the two centre backs, Andreas Hanche-Olsen and Yaw Amankwah, and forces the opponents to play the ball out wide to their wide players. He can play quite passively, just covering a lot of ground and cutting off a lot of passing options for his opponents. However there were some moments where Bohinen didn’t mark his opponent who made a run in the box, creating some big chances for the opponents.
As you can see from the image above Bohinen also has a good understanding of the game defensively. He spots the run of the attacker immediately and notices that the right centre back Solheim is too far away to help.
In transition Bohinen is a very hard worker. Offensively always positions himself to be able to receive the ball and make a play. And defensively he seems to track back, like he should. In the example below you can see Bohinen tracking back at full speed and recovering the ball, when Sandefjord is in the middle of a dangerous counter attack.
Bohinen likes to be involved in build-up and the more advanced areas of the pitch, but also has a great defensive skill set, as shown. Besides his tactical awareness and positioning his tackling and physicality make him very all-round. He does fine in ground duels and makes good sliding tackles with his left and right foot, a quality that not all players possess. This season he won 60% of his defensive duels and made 11.8 ball recoveries per 90 minutes.
In 1v1 situations Bohinen does okay, but he has a habit of going to the ground for a sliding tackle when it’s not needed. When an opponent dribbles past him in a situation like this, it’s nearly impossible for Bohinen to catch up since he is still on the ground.
Bohinen is quite tall at 6’1’’, but isn’t the greatest in the air. His jumping reach seems to be just fine, but his timing in the air could be improved. The Norwegian is quite strong, but probably should gain some muscle mass to be able to succeed in the top 5 leagues. He has decent pace, but isn’t the most explosive player over the first few metres. This could be a problem when he is up against a very fast number 10.
Conclusion and Future:
Emil Bohinen is a really entertaining players to watch and could surely play on a higher level than the Eliteserien. The 21 year old has enough areas where he can improve, like his defensive skills and physicality, but could become a great player. There has been interest in Bohinen from clubs in France, England and Italy, but I would love to see him perform in the Dutch Eredivisie. Here he has time to improve, while probably getting enough playtime, before making his next step. Earlier this year it looked like Bohinen was on his way out, but he stayed at Stabæk and renewed his contract till the summer of 2022.