October 18, 2021


documenting the nigerian story…

Denmark dream 1992 repeat but facing dangerous Czech side

Denmark will be dreaming of following in the footsteps of the side who claimed a shock European title in 1992, but standing in their way of a semi-final place at Euro 2020 on Saturday are the Czech Republic, who have sent them packing before.

The Danes were in danger of an early exit after group-stage losses to Finland and Belgium, the first of which was overshadowed by star player Christian Eriksen suffering a cardiac arrest on the pitch.

But, roared on by a raucous Copenhagen crowd, they thrashed Russia 4-1 to finish second in Group B, before travelling to Amsterdam to thump Wales 4-0 in the last 16.

Denmark have not reached a major tournament semi-final since lifting the trophy 29 years ago, when they initially failed to qualify but were late replacements for Yugoslavia.

“It’s a chance that we might never have again,” coach Kasper Hjulmand said ahead of tonight’s last-eight match against the Czechs in Baku.

“It’s many years’ work for lots of people. We want to make the most of this chance.”

The Scandinavians have gone from strength to strength in the tournament and know victory in Azerbaijan would set up a last-four meeting with either England or Ukraine at Wembley.

Youngster Mikkel Damsgaard has shone since taking the place of Eriksen in the second group match, scoring a wonderful opening goal against Russia.

“The match against Wales was the biggest of my career,” he said.

“The next match will be the biggest match I have ever played, so it’s getting even crazier all the time for me.”

Hjulmand is expected to have a full squad to choose from, with the exception of Eriksen, although RB Leipzig forward Yussuf Poulsen may only be fit enough to play for an hour.