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Denmark boss criticises UEFA after Eriksen's cardiac arrest

Tue 15 June 2021 | 17:55

Denmark coach Kasper Hjulmand has criticized UEFA protocols that allow a match to be postponed for two days due to the Coronavirus, but not when his player suffered a cardiac arrest on the pitch.

Christian Eriksen collapsed in Denmark's Euro 2020 opener against Finland on Saturday but the match was resumed after 90 minutes and Hjulmand's men eventually lost the game 1-0.

"

Coronavirus allows you to postpone a match for 48 hours. A cardiac arrest obviously does not. That, I think, is wrong,"

Hjulmand told a press conference on Tuesday.

"There is learning here. It was not the right decision to continue playing. The boys showed so much strength by going out and playing on.

"But I do not think it was the right thing to give us and the players the choice to go out and finish play on Saturday or Sunday.

"I felt that the players - and us close to them - were put under that pressure and were given that dilemma. It was a hugely difficult situation to be in.

"The only real leadership would have been to put the players on a bus and send them home and then deal with it after.

"You don't necessarily find good leadership in the protocols. Good leadership can sometimes be to lead with compassion."

Denmark

will face

Belgium

in their second group match on Thursday. Hjulmand is confident that his players will be able to perform well but admitted that the situation is not normal.

"

I don't think they're afraid to play but the normal reaction to a trauma like this, you should know, it's not only yourself,

" he added.

"It's also your family, maybe your kids, your wife, your parents. So the box of emotions has been opened. I think we took a big step yesterday and I think we'll take another one today.

"Of course the time until the kick-off will be emotional, and we have to prepare ourselves for that, for entering the stadium again. Getting back to see our great fans.

"And up to kick-off there'll be a lot of emotions we have to handle, and then prepare ourselves for when the referee whistles his first whistle.

"We will be ready to go and fight and play well and do everything for Denmark."

UEFA said in a statement on Monday:

"UEFA is sure it treated the matter with utmost respect for the sensitive situation and for the players

.

"It was decided to restart the match only after the two teams requested to finish the game on the same evening.

"The players' need for 48 hours' rest between matches eliminated other options."

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source: SportMob