Thomas Pyndt England v Denmark preview: “There’s still a lot of optimism before a very difficult game”
Our Matchday Squad journalist will be covering Denmark throughout Euro 2020
And so, it’s back to Wembley. One of the catchphrases in the football fever that has gripped Denmark in the last three weeks has been “We are not going home, we are moving on”, and the national team has done just that.
The quarter-final in Baku against the Czech Republic was as tight and exhausting as expected beforehand, but the Danish team got the early goal and then took hold of the game with one of the goals of the tournaments by Kasper Dolberg after Joakim Mæhles exceptional pass from the left.
The Czechs fought back, but Denmark managed to hold on after another impressive team performance that left Pierre-Emile Højbjerg in tears after the game, which made for some more gripping pictures in this most emotional of Euros.
A game at Wembley is always emotional for the visiting team and even more so when it is a semi-final, but even though the Denmark squad had a long and tough trip to Baku and back, there is still a lot of optimism before the very difficult game against England.
Kasper Hjulmand didn’t change his team for the quarter-finals, even though Yussuf Poulsen and Daniel Wass were back in contention, so he will probably start with the same 11 as in Baku and then use his substitutions wisely as he has done throughout the whole tournament, which also means that Denmark has many possibilities whichever way the game goes tactically.
The Danish Football Federation has helped Danes living in England to buy the 5800 allocated tickets for the game, but this will still be the first real away game for Denmark at these Euros. It’s a huge challenge, but the team is ready and there are also some historical facts worth mentioning.
Back in October, Denmark won 1-0 at Wembley against England in the Nations League with a penalty from Christian Eriksen, but the older generation also look back to 1983 where the Danish national team showed that something special was about to happen for the first time.
They qualified for the Euros in France in 1984 ahead of England, and the victory at Wembley was decisive with Allan Simonsen scoring from the penalty spot.
Football is coming home, but Denmark is not going home! Something will have to give. Will history repeat itself for the third time…?