3 things we learned from Denmark v. Belgium
Belgium launched a superb second half comeback to beat Denmark in Copenhagen as Christian Eriksen was saluted by both teams in an emotional encounter.
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Yussuf Poulsen gave Denmark a deserved early lead to send Parken stadium wild, but Kevin de Bruyne came on at half time and changed the game as he set up Thorgan Hazard for the equalizer and then scored the winner as Belgium turned on the style.
The win secures Belgium’s spot in the last 16 ahead of their final Group B game against Finland in St. Petersburg on Monday, while Denmark host Russia knowing only a win will do to keep their last 16 hopes alive.
3 things we learned, Denmark - Belgium
1. De Bruyne, Hazard change the game: Having these two come off the bench is wild and it proved to be the difference. De Bruyne came on at half time, Eden Hazard soon after, and Denmark couldn’t cope with the fluid attacks that followed. De Bruyne set up Thorgan Hazard for the equalizer and then scored the winner himself, as Lukaku finally had players around him to feed off. Belgium will hope De Bruyne and Hazard continue to get back to full fitness throughout this tournament. If they do, they will surely win it all, or come very close.
2. Denmark do Eriksen proud: They lost, but they gave it absolutely everything. Christian Eriksen will have been proud while watching on from his hospital bed. The No. 10 ranked team in the world pushed the No. 1 ranked team all the way and in the first half their hunger was incredible and they could have been 3-0 up inside the first 15 minutes. There were amazing scenes as Eriksen was saluted in the 10th minute and even late on Denmark came so close to getting an equalizer. After a draining and incredibly tough few days, Denmark did Eriksen, and their entire country, proud.
3. Group C unpredictable: Belgium will likely win the group, as expected, but Denmark play Russia in their final game and you’d bet on the Danes to win that in Copenhagen. Finland could sneak through in third-place or perhaps they will benefit from Belgium resting players in their final group game. The second and potential third spot is up for grabs and it will be a heck of a group stage finale, especially in Copenhagen. Denmark still has a chance to advance.
Man of the Match: Kevin de Bruyne - Changed the game after coming on at half time. Goal and an assist and proved his class. After overcoming his nasty facial injury, KDB is back.
Denmark came flying out of the traps and took the lead inside two minutes.
A simply amazing moment.
🔥 GOALLLLL! Denmark take the lead after 2 minutes. Poulsen finishes down low after Hojbjerg won the ball back from Denayer's poor pass.— Joe Prince-Wright (@JPW_NBCSports) June 17, 2021
Incredible noise in Copenhagen. Amazing passion. Wonderful scenes.
🎥 @TUDNUSA #DEN 1-0 #BEL #EURO2020 pic.twitter.com/Pz0Jeqovik
Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg won the ball back after a poor pass from Jason Denayer and found Poulsen who slotted home to send Parken wild in Copenhagen.
A wonderful moment arrived in the 10th minute as the ball was kicked out and the entire stadium rose as one to applaud Christian Eriksen.
👏 Just amazing scenes in Copehagen.— Joe Prince-Wright (@JPW_NBCSports) June 17, 2021
"All of Denmark is with you, Christian."
Game stops in 10th minute (Christian Eriksen wears No. 10) and entire stadium, plus players and staff, applaud as one to salute Eriksen.#DEN #BEL #EURO2020
🎥 via @TUDNUSApic.twitter.com/4sAlkUk3TJ
Denmark poured forward time and time again as Maehle and Wass went close with a header and Damsgaard curled wide, as Belgium looked shaky at the back.
Then Kevin de Bruyne came on at half time and changed the game for Belgium.
¡Goooooooooool de Bélgica! 🔥⚽— TUDN USA (@TUDNUSA) June 17, 2021
Qué golazo se acaban de armar los Red Devils. Thorgan Hazard termina una jugada para enmarcar. 🔥#DEN 1-1 #BEL#EuroTUDN I #VeranoDeCampeones I #EURO2020
🔴 ¡En vivo!
📲 GRATIS en la app TUDN y @PrendeTV
👉 https://t.co/8p9x63pG01 pic.twitter.com/alrh7CryDe
Lukaku raced free and found De Bruyne and his composure on the ball found Hazard to tap home the equalizer.
Belgium were soon 2-1 up as Lukaku again caused Denmark problems with amazing footwork, and a lovely passing move via Tielemans and the Hazard brothers found De Bruyne who hammered home a low shot.
😱 Watch this on repeat. Stunning from Belgium.— Joe Prince-Wright (@JPW_NBCSports) June 17, 2021
Kevin de Bruyne with a fine finish, but exquisite play from Romelu Lukaku and Belgium overall with Tielemans and the Hazard brothers teeing this up. Wow. #DEN 1-2 #BEL #EURO2020
🎥 @TUDNUSA pic.twitter.com/JCUh7sJSUs
Denmark did not give up, though.
Martin Braithwaite almost slid in and converted at the back post, while Thibaut Courtois was kept busy in the closing stages.
Braithwaite then hit the crossbar with a fine header late on, but Belgium held on for the win.