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Denmark 0-1 Finland: Joel Pohjanpalo header earns historic first Euros win after Christian Eriksen collapse

·2 min read
 (POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
(POOL/AFP via Getty Images)

Joel Pohjanpalo gave Finland a famous first ever European Championship victory but the night was overshadowed by the horrifying collapse of Denmark midfielder Christian Eriksen.

The match in Copenhagen was suspended for around 90 minutes after the Inter Milan star collapsed shortly before half-time and had to be given CPR on the pitch in a distressing scene. Thankfully, the Danish FA later confirmed he was awake and stable in hospital.

When play resumed, Pohjanpalo put Finland ahead against the run of play in the 60th minute when he rose above Joakim Maehle to head home a cross from Jere Uronen. Goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel got his hands on the ball but couldn’t keep it out.

Denmark dominated most of the game and were handed a soft penalty when Yussuf Poulsen went down under a challenge from Paulus Arajuuri. But Hradecky dived to his left to stop a tame effort from Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg.

Finland were making their debut at a major tournament but what should have been the biggest win in the country’s soccer history was completely overshadowed by Eriksen’s medical emergency.

Eriksen was given urgent medical attention on the field for about 10 minutes before he was carried off on a stretcher. The teams held an crisis meeting and decided to continue the match after it became clear that Eriksen was in stable condition.

Denmark had dominated the first half until the incident, and forced three decent saves from Hradecky in the opening 20 minutes. Jones Wind first tried a hard shot from the edge of the area, before Hradecky tipped a header from Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg over the bar and then palmed away a dipping long-distance shot from Eriksen in the 19th.

The Danes then failed to test Hradecky again until the penalty save.

Additional reporting by AP.

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