It’s England’s latest big chance to bring it home: Beat Denmark in a Euro 2021 semifinal at London’s Wembley Stadium and then get to host the final four days later in a first-ever appearance in a Euro title match.
It sets up perfectly for the English, who will play in front of a projected 60,000 mostly partisan fans (8,000 Danes are also expected), as they seek to finally get past a major tournament semifinal for the first time since 1966. They’ve fallen short at this stage on four previous semifinal appearances at both the World Cup (1990, 2018) and the Euros (1968, 1996).
But Denmark has played some of the best soccer of any team at these Euros, and that’s after overcoming the traumatic experience of watching star player Christian Eriksen survive a cardiac arrest episode during a match. With 11 goals scored, the Danes have the firepower to potentially be the first team to score against England during this tournament.
And unlike England, Denmark has won the Euros before on a magical Cinderella run in 1992. But the 2021 team, ranked No. 10 in the world, is no Cinderella. With players featuring in the top leagues in Europe, many picked the Danes as dark-horse favorites to win the tournament before they lost Eriksen.
The last time Denmark faced England? It was a Nations League match last October at Wembley Stadium. Denmark won 1-0 (highlights below). In fact, the seven matches they’ve played since the turn of this century have seen three wins apiece and a draw.
How to watch England vs. Denmark
- Date: Wed, July 7
- Time: 3 p.m. ET
- TV Channel: ESPN
- Spanish-language TV: Univision, TUDN
- Stream: fuboTV , ESPN+, TUDN.tv
ESPN will broadcast the England-Denmark semifinal in the USA, with Spanish-language coverage provided by Univision and TUDN.
Both those networks can be streamed on fuboTV (free 7-day trial).
The winner will face Italy in the final at Wembley Stadium on Sunday, July 11 at 3 p.m. ET.
England vs. Denmark projected lineups
England manager Gareth Southgate has shown he is not afraid to switch up formations if he believes there’s an edge to be gained. He went to a three-man center back set-up (3-4-3), plus wingbacks, to match Germany’s formation in the Round of 16. And then he switched to a 4-2-3-1 against Ukraine in the quarters. The results worked out for him in both cases.
The 3-4-3 could suit England best from a defensive standpoint against Denmark: It can help match up with the Danes’ dynamic three-man forward line, while also potentially neutralizing the impact of Danish left wingback Joakim Maehle, who’s been influential for his team.
But to go with a 3-4-3, Southgate would probably have to sacrifice an attacking midfielder like Mason Mount, whose vision and passing is so important to an England attack that has stalled at times during the tournament. If Mount truly has to play, it’d mean either sticking to the 4-2-3-1 or playing Mount at attacking right wing in the 3-4-3.
The most interesting question facing Denmark coach Kasper Hjulmand is whether to bring on Yussuf Poulsen at center forward in place of the red-hot Kasper Dolberg (above), who has scored in both of his starts. Poulsen could make sense to start the match given his speed, size, 1-on-1 ability and vertical runs, while Dolberg would be most useful off the bench if they’re chasing the result.
The other consideration for the Danes: Daniel Wass or Jens Stryger Larsen at right wingback? Larsen may prove the best option for the defensive job needed against Raheem Sterling.
England (3-4-3, left to right): 1-Jordan Pickford-GK — 6-Harry Maguire, 5-John Stones, 2-Kyle Walker — 3-Luke Shaw, 4-Declan Rice, 14-Kalvin Phillips, 12-Kieran Trippier — 10-Raheem Sterling, 9-Harry Kane, 19 Mason Mount
Denmark (3-4-3, left to right): 1-Kasper Schmeichel-GK — 3-Jannik Vestergaard, 4-Simon Kjaer, 6-Andreas Christensen — 5-Joakim Maehle, 8-Thomas Delaney, 23-Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, 17-Jens Stryger Larsen — 14-Mikkel Damsgaard, 20-Yussuf Poulsen, 9-Martin Braithwaite
England vs. Denmark: Odds & prediction
In all the jubilation surrounding England’s return to Wembley Stadium for the semifinal and a potential final, Denmark has receded into the background after being the big story at the Euros for several weeks. But the Danes pose a problematic matchup for England.
Denmark is dynamic and they can get down the field quickly in transition, regularly pushing numbers into the attack. And defensively, this Danish team won’t be the pushover that Ukraine was on set pieces. In fact, excluding the shock loss to Finland under trying circumstances and Russia’s penalty-kick conversion, the Danes have only conceded after three moments of world-class brilliance from Patrik Shick (Czech Republic) and Kevin De Bruyne (Belgium).
England is talented and deep, but it will face some adversity during this semifinal and it will be interesting to see how it responds under the weight of the pressure and expectations. Denmark, meanwhile, has nothing to lose and will play loose in the role of spoiler, similar to that 1992 title-winning side.
For that reason, the both-teams-to-score prop stands out with a price reflective of the fact that England has yet to concede at Euro 2021. Both teams should be goal dangerous in this one.
Also, the contrarian play is definitely in the mix here and the Denmark double chance (draw or win) is particularly compelling.
Prediction: England 1, Denmark 2
Odds courtesy of DraftKings
- England to win (90 mins): -141
- England to advance: -286
- Draw (90 mins): +250
- Denmark to win (90 mins): +480
- Denmark to advance: +230
- Denmark double chance: +118
- Denmark +0.75 Asian Handicap: -113
- Denmark to win and both teams to score: +1050
- England -0.75 Asian Handicap: -107
- Both teams to score: +118
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