After an emotional group stage and knockout games, Denmark’s fairytale comes to an end. Against all odds, the Danish national team reached the semi final after losing the first two games of the group stage.
Coming into this tournament, Denmark came in as a team with hopes of qualifying to the knockout stage and possibly reaching the quarter finals. Nevertheless, these hopes started to diminish following the loss of their star player, Christian Eriksen against Finland in the opening game.
Denmark’s hopes seemed to deteriorate even more as they lost their first two games, 0-1 to Finland and 2-1 to tournament favorites Belgium. But against all odds, Denmark thrashed Russia 4-1 to climb up to 2nd place in their group behind Belgium.
With impressive wins against Wales (4-0) and the Czech Republic (2-1) in the knockout stage, the dream of emulating their Euro success in 1992. Unfortunately, this year’s dark horses fell short of another European final.
So Far So Good
Denmark’s fairytale hopes couldn’t have been any higher in the 30′ minute when Mikkel Damsgaard put Denmark ahead after scoring a stunning free kick. Up to that point, Denmark was the better team on the pitch, where they gave England some trouble via counter attacks.
Things leveled quickly for England as Simon Kjaer accidentally deflects the English winger Bukayo Saka’s cross into his own net. Following the own goal, England seemed the more dangerous opponent for the rest of the 90 minutes.
Despite this, Denmark would still have some looks and give England a hard time in the defense.
Was It a Penalty?
Everything seemed to be pointing towards another penalty shootout until the 102′ minute of extra time. Manchester City winger, Raheem Sterling, fell to the ground and the referee didn’t hesitate to call a penalty.
But was it the right call?
Controversy rose up as the Danish defenders claimed that Sterling dived without any contact. In the eyes of many, except England supporters, Sterling’s “foul” was not a penalty. Even after a VAR check, the referee stated that the penalty call remained.
The Danish fairytale started slipping away as Harry Kane converted from the penalty spot in the 104′. Denmark’s keeper Kasper Schmeichel initially saved the penalty, but Kane converted on the rebound.
Following the penalty, Denmark’s Euro hopes came to an end after the final whistle in the 120′ minute.
England 2 – 1 Denmark.
This leads to the question every soccer fans has been asking on social media since the start of the Euros:
Is it coming home?