Euro Betting: England vs Denmark
Euro Semi-finals | 7 July | London
Their Euros So Far
The Three Lions face-off against the Great Danes for the second semi-final of Euro 2020. Both sides have had remarkable tournament runs for different reasons so far. For England, it’s been a path of breaking records and laying demons to rest; from England winning a Euro opener for the first time, to being the first team to not concede a goal in their first 5 games of a Euro tournament, and not least, to Gareth Southgate gaining revenge 25 years in the making by beating Germany in the last 16, having missed an infamous penalty against them in the semi-finals of Euro 96.
England look solid at the back, and progressively prolific at the front, following their 4-0 demolition of Ukraine in the quarter-finals; their biggest knockout tournament win since beating Germany 4-2 on that famous day in 1966. Harry Kane notched a brace in the last game, as he looks to make a late push for the Euro golden boot, whilst Raheem Sterling has been integral all tournament, scoring three and being key in everything creative and good for England. They now look hopeful of making another record of reaching a Euro final for the first time in their history.
For Denmark, their Euro 2020 success has been built on a foundation of emotion and togetherness. Their tournament started in the worst possible way, when their talisman and captain, Christian Eriksen collapsed and suffered a cardiac arrest mid-game against Finland. The game was suspended whilst Eriksen was taken to hospital, football no longer the biggest concern. With the game resuming several hours later, an understandably flat Denmark lost 1-0 to the Fins. More importantly, Eriksen did survive and recover, but inevitably misses the rest of the tournament.
Since then, his national team mates have been in inspired form; after a narrow loss to Belgium, they have since destroyed Russia 4-1, Wales 4-0, and most recently, an accomplished 2-1 win against the Czech Republic in the quarter-finals. Before this tournament, they had not won a Euro knockout game since their 2-0 victory over Germany in the final of Euro 92.
A number of Danes have risen to the Euro 2020 occasion since that fateful Finland game, Kasper Dolberg has scored three in the last two games, Joakim Maehle has been excellent throughout, whilst Simon Kjaer has been their rock at the back, as well as the man quick-thinking enough to put his stricken teammate Eriksen in the recovery position when he suffered his cardiac arrest.
Euro Squad News
England have reached the semi-finals pretty much unscathed. Bukayo Saka is in good condition following a ‘knock’ against Germany, and the yellow cards for Declan Rice, Kalvin Phillips and Phil Foden have now been wiped. Plus, players who were coming back from injuries at the start of the tournament have now had game-time to be in contention for this semi-final against Denmark.
For Kasper Hjulmand’s side, it’s similarly positive. All their key players and mainstays since the opening game setback and near-tragedy remain in contention. Whilst the absence of Eriksen will inevitably be felt, the players that have stepped forward to fill the void have excelled at Euro 2020. Maehle is in the Top 10 for several Euro performance charts, and the team have scored 10 goals in 3 games.
England’s long-held national desire for football glory, combined with Denmark’s renewed sense of purpose following Eriksen’s incident will make for a great semi-final contest.
There have been 21 contests between the national sides, with England winning 12 to Denmark’s 4. Most recently, they met each other in the Nations League. A scoreless draw was played out in Copenhagen, whilst the Danes nicked a 1-0 victory in the return match at Wembley. Notably, Christian Eriksen scored the penalty that game, shortly after a sending off for Harry Maguire and England.
With this semi-final to be played at Wembley, it’s worth remarking that Denmark’s Nations League victory was their third away win against England, and their second at Wembley after a 1-0 Euro qualifying victory in 1983. England last beat Denmark in a friendly match in 2014, with Daniel Sturridge nabbing a late winner.
In terms of international tournaments, their last meeting was at the 2002 World Cup, with England running out 3-0 winners and goals from Michael Owen and Emile Heskey. They also met during Euro 92, a 0-0 draw before Denmark went on to win the competition, defeating Germany 2-0 in the final. Winning the tournament was especially surprising and fateful for the Danes, because they only qualified at the last moment following the disqualification of Yugoslavia after the breakup of the country during national warfare.
So, will destiny and fate be on the side of the Danes once more? Or will Gareth Southgate join Sir Alf Ramsey as the only manager to have taken England to a major final?