Tag: Denmark

The Tactics Tank: England vs Denmark, Exfoliated

With just a matter of days, weeks, months and minutes until England fly out to Brazil before flying back again either having done well or not so well at the FIFA World Cup, Wednesday’s friendly fixture against Denmark afforded boss Roy Hodgson the ideal opportunity to not only evaluate potential candidates for places in the squad, but also test and tweak the tactics with which he will either baffle or amuse the world. Hodgson, of course, has long been derided as a kind of football conservative, the entrenched view of many being that he is to football tactics what Michael Gove is to education – namely a universally loathed, luddite Puritan mired in dark age thinking and possessed of a face that resembles an animal. While Hodgson’s failure at Liverpool hardly helps the cause of mainstream supporters prepared to defend him against his more vociferous detractors, his tenure as England manager – and particularly his record in recent games – has provided a more positive visualisation of what may lay ahead in Brazil. Born in 1947, Hodgson’s has certainly been around the block a few times. His managerial career has been wildly varied, taking in domestic titans and smaller, obscure clubs, as well as a storied international career spanning several decades. This poses a big problem for soccer academics and tactical analysts trying to establish his heritage as a...

Read More

Euro 2012: Denmark 2-3 Portugal

What a strange game of football this was. Jamie Carragher in the ITV studio called it the tournament’s best to date. But Clyde Tyldesley in the ITV commentary box was struggling for euphemisms for dull in the third quarter. And vast swathes of the first half weren’t much cop either. AND Cristiano Ronaldo got away with a stinker. Not only did his misses not matter in the end (unless goal difference comes into play, which it might if they lose to Holland on Sunday) but Andy Townsend thought he had quite a good game really. Lucky boys, the Portuguese, getting away with this win having dozily let a two-goal lead slip. They didn’t start playing against Germany until they went 1-0 down. And they didn’t really click into gear in this one until they’d let Nicklas Bendtner score twice against them – enough to stir the doziest of teams into action when you think about it. For those few moments between Bendtner making it 2-2 and substitute Silvestre Varela winning the match with a stunning half-volley, Portugal were as impressive as anyone in the tournament to date. Pity it was such a long wait. Jools Holland’s team (the “boogie-woogie piano master” masquerading as Portugal manager Paulo Bento until his next tour) sauntered their way into a two-goal lead, merrily pinging in ideal crosses for 14-foot strikers until Joao Moutinho’s...

Read More

Euro 2012: Denmark 1-0 Netherlands

Luck, we could posit, is more complex than simply being a matter of black and white. Whilst the Netherlands have a right to feel a little aggrieved that a couple of refereeing decisions might not have gone their way in Kharkiv this evening, there is a truth in the point that a team featuring such names as Arjen Robben, Robin Van Persie, Wesley Sneijder and John Heitinga shouldn’t be depending upon the benevolence of the referees whistle in order to claim a point or more from a match against the group outsiders in the finals of a major tournament. For every time the referees whistle didn’t rise to his mouth, there was another when a Dutch player failed to take advantage of an opportunity that had presented itself to them. This luck came into play on more than one occasion. A missed handball from Denmarks Simon Poulsen shortly after they had taken the lead which would have allowed the Dutch team a penalty kick and an almost immediate route back into the game. A shot from Arjen Robben that thudded out off the post. A desperate last minute appeal for a penalty kick from Klaas Jan Huntelaar as the match ticked over into stoppage time which was again waved away. Sometimes, the rub of the green if not on your side, and such is the wealth of talent at...

Read More

Euro Moments: Denmark

This mornings cartoon for the run-up to the European Championships from Dotmund features Denmark. They won this tournament once, you know, and NOBODY EXPECTED THEM TO! Don’t forget, you can see plenty more Dotmund artwork here, and you can read his trenchant opinions on just about everything here.                                       You can download the Twohundredpercent Euro 2012 spreadsheet here (for Excel 2007), whilst a version that will be compatible with older versions of Excel is available here. You can follow Twohundredpercent on Twitter by clicking...

Read More

Euro 2012: The Runners & Riders – Denmark

It seems inconceivable that anyone will be able to mention Denmark in relation to the European Championships without turning the clock back twenty years, to when the Danes were hastily assembled following the forced withdrawal of Yugoslavia from that summers tournament in Sweden and then went and won the entire tournament. The Danes haven’t been quite as fortunate since, but they are a team that consigned one of their group opponents in this summers tournament to a play-off place. Even though they start this tournament as the outsiders to get through the group stages, it would be foolish to merely write them off as cannon fodder for Germany, the Netherlands and Portugal. The History: There is a certain irony to the fact that it was in 1992 that Denmark became the champions of Europe, as this came several years after what might have been considered to be the finest Danish team of all time. Denmark’s golden generation came from nowhere and faded from view almost as quickly. They beat England at Wembley in qualifying for the 1984 European Championship finals and, once there, came within a penalty shoot-out of reaching the final of the competition before losing to Spain. The team traveled to Mexico for the World Cup finals two years later with high hopes but, after qualifying from their group which included a thrashing of Uruguay, the team...

Read More