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Christian Eriksen: Denmark midfielder remains stable and sends greetings to team-mates after collapsing during Euro 2020 opener against Finland

The 29-year-old was given emergency CPR on the pitch with the game against Finland temporarily suspended just before half-time; Danish team have cancelled all their planned media activities for Sunday and also postponed a training session to give players more time to process the incident

Christian Eriksen remains in a stable condition and sent his greetings to his team-mates, the Danish FA has said after the player collapsed during Denmark's opening Euro 2020 match.

The 29-year-old was given emergency CPR on the pitch with the game against Finland temporarily suspended just before half-time.

Eriksen is currently being treated at Rigshospitalet, one of Denmark's top hospitals, which is less than a mile from Parken Stadium in Copenhagen.

"This morning we have spoken to Christian Eriksen, who has sent his greetings to his teammates," a Danish FA statement read on Twitter.

"His condition is stable, and he continues to be hospitalised for further examination."

The Danish team cancelled their planned media activity for Sunday morning and also postponed a training session to give players more time to process the incident.

The statement continued: "The team and staff of the national team has received crisis assistance and will continue to be there for each other after yesterday's incident.

"We would like to thank everyone for the heartfelt greetings to Christian Eriksen from fans, players, the Royal Families from both Denmark and England, international associations, clubs etc.

"We encourage everyone to send their greetings to the Danish FA, where we will make sure they are all passed on to Christian and his family."

UEFA confirmed the Group B match had been halted due to a "medical emergency" after Eriksen dropped to the ground shortly before half-time, leaving players from both teams in clear distress.

English referee Anthony Taylor called medics on to the pitch and Eriksen underwent prolonged treatment, including CPR.

Team-mates formed a shield around the former Tottenham player, while fans inside the stadium were clearly stunned by the incident, with some pictured in tears.

UEFA confirmed the match, which originally kicked off at 5pm UK time, would restart at 7.30pm at the request of players from both teams.

A statement read: "Following the request made by players of both teams, UEFA has agreed to restart the match between Denmark and Finland tonight at 20:30 CET.

"The last four minutes of the first half will be played, there will then be a five-minute half-time break followed by the second half."

Finland won the game 1-0 after it was resumed, with Joel Pohjanpalo heading home the only goal on the hour mark.

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Denmark and Finland fans chanted Eriksen's name after the midfielder was taken to hospital

Denmark had the opportunity to level the score 12 minutes later but Tottenham's Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg had his penalty saved by Lukas Hradecky.

The Danish FA (DBU) confirmed crisis support will be offered to the players, Eriksen's family and the staff working with their men's national team.

Denmark's team doctor Morten Boesen said: "We were called on the field when Christian fell over. I did not even get to see it, but it quickly became clear that he was not conscious.

"When we got there, he was lying on his side and was breathing and had a pulse. Pretty quickly, the picture changed, and then we started life-saving heart treatment.

"We also got fantastic quick help from the stadium doctor and the rest of the emergency services, and we got the necessary measures implemented.

"We got Christian back, and he managed to talk to me before he was taken to the hospital for further investigation and examination."

Finland players were in distress after Denmark's Christian Eriken collapsed
Image: Finland players were in distress after Denmark's Christian Eriksen collapsed

The Finnish national team wrote on Twitter: "The thoughts of the Finnish men's national team, the Finnish Football Association and the Finnish football family are with Eriksen, his relatives and the Danish team."

UEFA president Aleksander Ceferin added: "Moments like this put everything in life into perspective. I wish Christian a full and speedy recovery and pray his family has strength and faith.

"At these times, the unity of the football family is so strong and he and his family carry with them the good wishes and prayers of everyone.

"I heard of fans of both teams chanting his name. Football is beautiful and Christian plays it beautifully."

Eriksen's club, Inter, tweeted: "Forza Chris, all of our thoughts are with you."

Former team Tottenham said: "Get well soon, Christian. The whole Spurs family is with you."

Eriksen's Inter team-mate Romelu Lukaku paid tribute to the midfielder after he scored for Belgium against Russia in Saturday evening's other Euro 2020 match.

He said to the pitchside camera: "Chris, I love you" after he scored in the Group B clash.

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Denmark head coach Kasper Hjulmand says all their thoughts and prayers are with Christian Eriksen and his family, as the midfielder is in a stable condition in hospital

Tearful Hjulmand: A traumatic experience for us all

Denmark head coach Kasper Hjulmand was in tears as he addressed the media after their game with Finland, admitting it had been a traumatic experience for everyone.

Hjulmand said: "It was a really tough evening, one which we've all been reminded what the most important things in life are. It's meaningful relationships. It's those people who are close to us. It's family and friends.

"Everything, everything, everything - all thoughts are with Christian and his family.

After the match had initially been suspended following the incident, the Denmark players decided they were happy to continue having received encouraging news about Eriksen's condition.

Although they were beaten 1-0, Hjulmand added: "I could not be more proud of this team, who take good care of each other.

"There are players in there who are completely emotionally finished. Players who on another day could not have played this match. They are holding each other. It was a traumatic experience."

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Professor of Cardiology Dr Sanjay Sharma says the quick response of the medical staff was crucial after Christian Eriksen collapsed on the pitch.

'Eriksen had no history of heart concerns'

Despite being given life-saving heart treatment on the pitch, Christian Eriksen had no prior heart issues during his time with Tottenham, his former cardiologist has said.

Dr Sanjay Sharma of St. George's University of London said the Dane had returned normal tests since joining the club in 2013 before leaving for Inter Milan in 2019 with Saturday's incident leaving him shocked.

"I was horrified - these events are uncommon and usually occur in 1 in 50,000 sports people and usually in people with undetected cardiac faults of the heart muscle or the electrical system," Dr Sharma told Sky Sports News.

"A player like (Christian) Eriksen would have been tested on an annual basis and was tested in comprehensive detail when he signed for Spurs as well as tested annually until he left the club.

"His cardiac results were normal so it really does beg the question as to why it happened yesterday."

Denmark players gather together on the pitch as they return to resume the match
Image: Denmark players gather together on the pitch as they return to resume the match

Dr Sharma, who chairs the FA's expert cardiac consensus group and is a consultant for charity Cardiac Risk in the Young (CRY), said there were multiple reasons why Eriksen could have collapsed.

"There are several possibilities - one that it was an undetected cardiac condition as some of the tests we perform do not pick up every single thing such as mild scar or mild inflammation of the heart muscle," Dr Sharma added.

"Or it could be something that developed after he was tested in 2019 but I am sure Inter Milan would have tested him.

"I am sure the Danish cardiologists are doing their upmost to find out what happened yesterday - that has to be the ultimate aim, to find out what happened and what went wrong.

"They'll be doing all the tests that had been done whilst he was a player here [at Tottenham] and whilst playing in Italy, checking for specific other conditions that we don't usually look for, such as blocked arteries, because they are usually quite uncommon in players as young as Eriksen.

"They'll be checking for scar tissue and of course they will treat him and depending on what they find the treatment will vary but the aim is to preserve a good quantity and quality of life."

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Dr Andrew Deaner, who treated Fabrice Muamba on the pitch nine years ago when he suffered a cardiac arrest, praised the speedy medical response after Christian Eriksen collapsed and says it’s vital to have defibrillators at all football matches.

'Swift response crucial, but medical support is needed for lower leagues'

The doctor who treated Fabrice Muamba after he collapsed during a game in 2012 praised the swift medical reactions in treating Christian Eriksen, but says the football authorities still need to do more to support players lower down the football pyramid.

The images of Eriksen collapsing on the pitch during Denmark's opening Euro 2020 match against Finland and being given emergency CPR brought back painful memories for Dr Andrew Deaner.

Deaner was the doctor on hand to treat Muamba after the then Bolton midfielder suffered a cardiac arrest during a game in March 2012.

Muamba's heart stopped beating for 78 minutes after he collapsed on the pitch during an FA Cup quarter-final at Tottenham.

"It brought back memories but it's great to see medical staff coming on and starting CPR at an early stage," Deaner told Sky Sports News.

Fabrice Muamba suffered a cardiac arrest during Bolton's FA Cup game against Tottenham in March 2012
Image: Fabrice Muamba suffered a cardiac arrest during Bolton's FA Cup game against Tottenham in March 2012

"I could obviously recognise what was happening and could see they were using a defibrillator but of course, like everyone else, feared the worst.

"The norm is what happened with Christian (Eriksen) and if CPR is started effectively and you have early access to defibrillators, you should get a positive result.

"It's another example that everyone should recognise the importance of early CPR, learn how to do it and make sure in your local community you have defibrillators available quickly.

"The Football authorities insist on having trained staff nearby and having defibrillators nearby and maybe what we did with Fabrice (Muamba) and the work we did afterwards has made sure that's the case at all important matches.

"I hope this will also be the case in less important matches because it is those who collapse in lower league matches and amateur matches who may not have access to resuscitation and defibrillators as easily.

"Let's hope this is another example that pushes the authorities to make sure defibrillators are available at every football ground, at Hackney Marshes and places all over the country where people play football on a Sunday or a Saturday."

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