Denmark – France: Denmark Miss Out On Nations League Finals Despite Excellent Victory (2-0)

In a dress rehearsal for matchday two in Group D at the Qatar 2022 World Cup, Denmark and France clashed to settle matters in a different international competition. The impressive 2-0 scoreline wasn’t enough to send Denmark to the Nations League finals, but it will give them great confidence ahead of the main event in November.

Tactical analysis and match report by James Norton.

Having achieved a crucial victory on Thursday evening, tournament holders France were aiming to maintain their League A status with another positive result. However, hosts Denmark were hoping to go one better: Kasper Hjulmand’s men knew a win would give them a chance of reaching the Nations League finals for the first time.

Unfortunately for Denmark, Thursday’s 2-1 loss in Croatia meant they also needed Zlatko Dalić’s side to slip up in their fixture against Austria to pull off qualification. Hjulmand made three changes from that defeat, which most notably included switching from a back three to a back four in a 4-3-3 formation. 

Captain Kasper Schmeichel continued in goal; Joachim Andersen and Andreas Christensen played ahead of him as the center-backs, with Joakim Maehle moving to left back and Rasmus Kristensen coming into the side at right back. The familiar midfield three of Pierre-Emile Højbjerg, Thomas Delaney and Christian Eriksen remained untouched. Up top, Kasper Dolberg replaced Martin Braithwaite as the central striker, with Mikkel Damsgaard and Andreas Skov Olsen operating on the wings.

Despite making five changes, Didier Deschamps decided to stick with the 3-4-1-2 formation that proved successful against Austria. Alphonse Areola . . .

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