Sports Round-Up: Danish association calls for new national football arena - The Post

Sports Round-Up: Danish association calls for new national football arena

Elsewhere, Andreas Cornelius scored the first Danish Serie A hat-trick in half a century. Harder is up for the Ballon D’Or again and the plaudits are raining down hard in kayaking, chess and cycling

Demolishing opponents … and stadiums too? (photo: Christian Wenande)
October 24th, 2019 12:40 pm| by Christian W

The Danish national team has played its games at the site of Parken Stadium for more than a century. Some of the fondest and cruellest fan memories have originated there.

Scoring three against Croatia on the way to the 1998 World Cup and beating Portugal 2-1 in 2011 to qualify for Euro 2012 remain some of the more recent classics, although skinning the mighty Soviet bear 4-2 on Constitution Day in 1985 probably ranks as the most comprehensive moment.

Conceding to Italy in the dying minutes to draw 2-2 and miss out on the 2014 World Cup and the notorious 3-3 game with Sweden that ended up in a walkover win for the Swedes and a 2008 World Cup qualification failure after a Danish fan attacked the referee, remain two of the low points.

READ ALSO: Skinning the mighty bear: The game that united a nation

50,000 all-seater
But all those emotional twists and turns may have to find a new home in the foreseeable future, according to the Danish football association, DBU, which has expressed an interest in establishing a new national football area that can seat at least 50,000 fans.

“We need to establish a modern national stadium with a capacity of a minimum of 50,000 fans. That is a demand that must be met if we are to host the big tournaments: the women’s Euros, a women’s World Cup, maybe a Europa League final or other big tournaments,” DBU wrote in a document to the local and league associations.

DBU boss Jesper Møller confirmed to Politiken newspaper that Danish football’s greatest challenge is a lack of modern infrastructure. And that challenge needs to be met soon.

READ ALSO: Doomsday in Dublin … again: Danes need a draw against Ireland to reach Euro 2020

Ready by 2025
DBU is open to a solution being found in the construction of a brand new stadium or the expansion of current stadiums in Copenhagen, such as Parken or Brøndby Stadium. Møller hopes a new national venue will be ready by 2025.

A modern 25,000-seater is also desired to be established in another part of the country, where high-profile youth tournaments, such as the under-21 Euros, could be held.

“We need to discuss with relevant actors, both in terms of Brøndby Stadium and Parken. But no one is a clear priority at the moment,” Møller told Politiken.

Double up on the fast track
Denmark scored a number of medals at the 2019 UEC Track Championships in Apeldoorn in the Netherlands. Julie Leth and Amalie Dideriksen took gold in the women’s Madison and Lasse Norman Hansen and Michael Mørkøv won the men’s Madison. The Danish team won three gold medals and one silver at the event, which was good enough for fourth overall. The Netherlands finished top of the medal count, followed by France and Russia.

Danish gridiron returns home to glory
In what was the first Euro qualifier home game for the Danish US football team since 2003, the Danes beat the Netherlands 22-19 at Gentofte Sportspark on October 19. The Danes led by 15 points going into the final quarter of the Euro 2020 opener, but ended up having to hold off a spirited comeback by the Dutch. On October 26, Denmark will travel to Finland, but could face stiffer opposition, as the Finns have already spanked the Dutch 55-0.

First Danish Serie A hattrick in half a century
Andreas Cornelius may have been considered a bust in Cardiff City a few years ago, but he’s making a splash for his Serie A club Parma at the moment. On Sunday, he came on as an early sub and whacked in a cracking hat-trick – the first Dane to do so in the top Italian flight since legendary Harald Nielsen scored three in a 4-0 win for Bologna over Roma in 1963. Cornelius and Parma ended up winning 5-1 over Genoa. Check out the solid hat-trick in the video below.

Harder back for another Ballon d’Or try
Danish forward Pernille Harder has been named as one of 20 women vying for the Women’s 2019 Ballon d’Or title – the trophy handed out by FIFA to recognise the best player in the world. Harder, who just missed out winning it last year, was the only Danish player listed, while last year’s winner Ada Hegerberg of Norway is also challenging again. The US led the way with four entries, followed by Sweden, France and the Netherlands with three, and England with two.

Danish woe at Denmark Open
There wasn’t much to celebrate for the Danish badminton players, despite playing on home turf at the Denmark Open last weekend. The were no titles for the Danes, and the best result was Viktor Axelsen losing to Chen Long in the semi-finals of the men’s singles. Players from Japan, South Korea, Indonesia and Taiwan ended up snapping up the titles.

Denmark has a kayak marathon powerhouse
Danish marathon kayaker Mads Brandt Pedersen recently enjoyed a strong performance at the ICF Canoe Marathon World Championships in Shaoxing, China. The 22-year-old Silkeborg resident won the gold medal in the under-23 and senior categories, a feat he also accomplished at the European Championships in July. Pedersen is the first ever athlete to win both an U23 and a senior world title at the same ICF championships.

Young Dane chasing Carlsen
At just 15 years of age, Jonas Buhl Bjerre has become the youngest chess grandmaster in Danish history. Playing out of Skanderborg Chess Club, Bjerre performed so well at a tournament on the Isle of Man recently that he fulfilled the demands to attain the highest level of the sport. Davor Palo held the previous youth record in Denmark when he became at grandmaster in 2005 at the age of 19. Bjerre became European champion at the under-14 level in 2017 and recently faced Norwegian chess legend Magnus Carlsen at an event in Copenhagen.