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Sports : Denmark will have Amsterdam and whole sporting world on their side after Christian Eriksen collapse

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Wales have somehow gone from the people’s favourites to potential party poopers in the space of two European Championships.

When they take on Denmark in the last 16 of Euro 2020 on Saturday, only Welsh people will want their nation to win.

AFP

The victory over Russia warmed the hearts of football fans everywhere

It was a far cry from the distressing events of their opener

AFP

It was a far cry from the distressing events of their opener

The rest of the sporting world will be behind the Danes, who are riding on pure spirit following the collapse of Christian Eriksen in the first match.

Scenes of distress and fear in Copenhagen during that opening game against Finland were replaced with jubilation and ecstasy as a stunning 4-1 victory over Russia booked their place in the knockout stages.

And while Saturday’s 5pm clash will take place in Amsterdam, it will feel like a home match for the Danes.

The United Kingdom is not on Holland’s safe list of countries amid the COVID-19 pandemic, which essentially bans Wales fans from attending.

Wales will not have any support in the stadium – or indeed from anyone but their own natives

Getty

Wales will not have any support in the stadium – or indeed from anyone but their own natives

Denmark isn’t on the list either, but their European Union membership entitles their supporters to exemption from entry rules and quarantine requirements, so long as they spend less than 12 hours in the Netherlands.

Wales get no such privilege as a result of Brexit.

Travelling Danish fans are expected to make up around a quarter of the 16,000 crowd at the Johan Cruyff Arena – and you can bet the Dutch locals in attendance will be Denmark supporters for the day.

Eriksen, of course, is a product of the Ajax academy and spent five years at the Johan Cruyff Arena, where he remains fondly remembered.

Eriksen was at Ajax between 2008 and 2013 before joining Tottenham

Getty

Eriksen was at Ajax between 2008 and 2013 before joining Tottenham

And besides the whole world’s support, a newly-inspired Denmark enter the last-16 filled with a sense of hope and destiny after visiting their talisman, who was recently discharged from hospital after being fitted with a heart-starter device.

Kasper Schmeichel told CNN on Friday: “It was great to see him. That helped a lot of the guys I think just to see him and erase the last image we had of him on the pitch.

“To see him in real life and to see that he was okay…it was really important.”

Anyone who eliminates Schmeichel, Simon Kjaer and co. will find themselves rather unpopular in Amsterdam.

Pints went everywhere in Copenhagen on Monday night – and those scenes could be recreated in Amsterdam

Getty

Pints went everywhere in Copenhagen on Monday night – and those scenes could be recreated in Amsterdam

That’s new for Wales – who became everyone’s favourite underdogs in France at Euro 2016, progressing all the way to the semi-finals, buoyed on by thousands of travelling Dragons.

This time, they’ll have to play the lonely villains to secure another crack at Euros glory.

Wales vs Denmark in the last 16 of Euro 2020 is live on talkSPORT this Saturday, kick-off 5pm





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