Euro 2024: England faces Denmark in rematch of semifinal last time decided by Harry Kane goal

FRANKFURT, Germany (AP) — England faces Denmark on Thursday as the leader of Group C at the European Championship after a 1-0 win over Serbia. Denmark was denied by Slovenia’s late leveler in a 1-1 draw also on Sunday. They meet in Frankfurt at the Waldstadion where kickoff is at 6 p.m. local time (1600 GMT). Here’s what to know about the match:

Match facts

— Denmark’s need for a win is greater, ahead of a final Group C game against a physically imposing Serbia team.

— The teams renew their rivalry from a Euro 2020 semifinal played three years ago at Wembley Stadium. England won 2-1 after extra time, sealed when Harry Kane followed up his penalty being saved by Kasper Schmeichel to score when the ball rebounded to him.

— Denmark did not easily forget how England got that decisive spot-kick, for a foul awarded against defender Joakim Mæhle — “a penalty which should not have been a penalty,” coach Kasper Hjulmand said then. Hjulmand said Wednesday he’s not thinking about that incident anymore, preferring to look at the next game “through the front window.”

— There is a familiarity between the squads with teammates at Manchester United, Crystal Palace and Brentford on either side of this game.

Team news

— Gareth Southgate is coaching England at his fourth tournament and will be less troubled than analysts and fans about the manner of victory over Serbia. England eased its way through the group stage at Euro 2020 — making at least two changes between each game — did not concede a goal, then accelerated through the knockout rounds.

— Southgate’s main call could be if Trent Alexander-Arnold’s long-range passing is retained in central midfield alongside Declan Rice. Recent debutants Kobbie Mainoo and Adam Wharton are options.

— England’s preferred left back Luke Shaw is still not involved in team training, and Kieran Trippier should continue on his less favored flank.

— Denmark has reported no injury concerns with defender Simon Kjaer, its captain at Euro 2020, fit to return.

By the numbers

— A draw can be a good result for Denmark even if it ends the day third in the standings. Slovenia plays Serbia in the earlier game Thursday. In two previous Euros with a 24-team tournament format — which sends four of the six third-place teams to the knockout phase — a team with three draws has done enough to advance.

— Another England win would set the team up to win Group C and face a third-place team in the round of 16. The group runner-up will face the Group A winner, likely Germany, in the vibrant Dortmund stadium.

— However, England has never won two straight games to start a Euros tournament.

— Denmark’s Kjaer was an unused substitute against Slovenia and his Denmark record of 132 national-team games is now just one ahead of Christian Eriksen, who scored in that 1-1 draw.

What they’re saying

— “We see it every day in training here, and he’s such a nice guy as well. You know he has high standards that he sets and expects.” — England midfielder Kobbie Mainoo, 19, on star teammate Jude Bellingham, who turns 21 next week.

— “Once the tournament starts you get into a rhythm. It came and we won it. So, we’re confident now, we’re happy.” — England winger Bukayo Saka on winning the first game.

— “Are we favorites? No. Is it a failure if we don’t win the Euros? No. But we have to have the dreams. If we don’t dream, something is wrong.” — Denmark coach Kasper Hjulmand.

— “English football has a great space in my heart. Maybe I am going to end there at some point.” — Denmark goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel, who won league and cup titles with Leicester and now plays in Belgium for Anderlecht.

— “He can produce magic at the drop of a hat,” England defender Kyle Walker about Denmark’s Eriksen, his former teammate at Tottenham.


AP Euro 2024:

Copyright © 2024 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, written or redistributed.

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