Christian Eriksen is widely acknowledged as the biggest threat to Ireland’s World Cup hopes, but according to Schmeichel, the Tottenham play-maker has “disappeared” in 60 of his 73 internationals write The Irish Independent.
So for the Irish that’s good news right: the only world-class player on either side in tomorrow night’s play-off first leg delivers for his country less than 20pc of the time.
If only it worked that way, and it doesn’t sadly with Schmeichel reckoning that most of Eriksen’s influential displays have come since Age Hareide took over as Denmark manager in March last year.
The article says he was asked if he’s worried that Eriksen could be nullified by Ireland, Manchester United legend Schmeichel said: “Christian has played about 75 times for Denmark and that’s happened about 60 times. He’s just disappeared.
He added “But that was under a different manager, a different system. He has been played out of position and has been dictated to play in a certain way, which has been very difficult for him.
“But now it’s different, now Christian is more free in his role. He can roam around and play his game, and that’s worked really well for Christian in the last four months.”
The article adds that those last four months, Denmark won three successive games – including a 4-0 thrashing of pool winners Poland, ranked No 6 in the world – to secure a play-off berth, before a dull draw with Romania. Eriksen scored in all four games to bring his pool tally to eight.
“That was our best game for many years,” says Schmeichel (of the Poland result), explaining that the Danes’ renaissance after several years in the doldrums stems from a return to a more traditional, direct style.
The Irish will hold no fear going in to the game but Eriksen does offer a huge threat and he’s been in good form. My heart says Martin O’Neill’s men will be ok however my head says that Eriksen might just break Irish hearts.
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