To prepare you for the tournament, The18 has launched team-by-team previews for the 2022 FIFA World Cup in Qatar. Here’s the Denmark World Cup preview who’ll play in Group D against France, Australia and Tunisia.
Denmark World Cup Preview 2022
World Cup Appearances: 6th
Best Finish: Quarterfinals (1998)
How they got here: Denmark automatically qualified for the World Cup after finishing top of UEFA qualifying group F. The Danes tied Germany for the best record in UEFA World Cup qualifying with a remarkable 27 points in 10 games.
Coach: Kasper Hjulmand (Danish)
Strongest XI: (3-4-3) Kasper Schmeichel; Andreas Christensen, Simon Kjaer, Joachim Andersen; Joakim Maehle, Thomas Delaney, Pierre-Emile Højbjerg, Rasmus Kristensen; Christian Eriksen, Mikkel Damsgaard, Martin Braithwaite
Injuries: Christian Norgaard (Achilles)
What’s to like: Denmark’s 1992 Euro Championship is the national team’s greatest achievement; however, this new group of players are looking to top that. A magical run in Euro 2020 saw the Danes make it to the semifinal after Christian Eriksen’s terrifying collapse from suffering a cardiac arrest.
Eriksen, despite all odds, is playing again and in great form. Denmark was in a UEFA Nations League group with France and bested the defending world champs twice. This team isn’t playing around and can go far in this tournament.
The defense simply doesn’t concede goals and is solid. That fierce backline is Denmark’s greatest asset.
What’s not to like: Denmark is one of the favorite dark horses of the tournament outside the perennial winners like France, Brazil and company. Can Denmark actually bring down one of the giants is the question.
Kjulmand will hope his team finishes top of Group D because the runner-up will most likely face Argentina in the Round of 16.
One other concern is goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel. He will turn 36 just before the tournament begins and hasn’t been great for French side OGC Nice. He’s conceded 18 goals through 15 games and kept just two clean sheets.
X-Factor: Movies will be made about Christian Eriksen. A year ago, no one would have believed that he would be playing in a World Cup after collapsing at the Euros. He quite literally looked death in the eye and is still playing at an elite level.
He’s playing some lovely ball for Manchester United and is destined to do something special at this World Cup.
Best Hair: Martin Braithwaite
Most likely to fuck it all up: Kasper Schmeichel will either show his age with poor performances or be unstoppable. There’s no inbetween.
What will make this a good World Cup: A trip to the quarterfinals.
Bonus prediction: Martin Braithwaite scores a brace at some point and an announcer calls him “Martin Bracewaite.”