As Christian Eriksen lay unconscious on the pitch after collapsing in the Euro 2020 game with his pulse receding, Danish team doctor Morten Boesen quickly realized there was no had not a second to waste.
“He was breathing and I could feel his pulse. But suddenly that changed, ”Boesen said. “And as everyone saw, we started giving him CPR.”
The next 10 minutes were some of the scariest to take place in a European Football Championship match.
Several doctors worked frantically to give Eriksen chest compressions while his teammates stifled their tears and formed a circle around the midfield to shield the stage from public view.
And finally, the eerie silence that had descended around Parken Stadium was replaced by massive cheers.
“Help came very, very quickly from the medical team and the rest of the staff, and with their cooperation we did what we needed to do. We managed to get Christian back.
– HAMDAN FN (@hugehamdan) June 13, 2021
Eriksen was awake and in stable condition on Saturday evening after being taken to a hospital in Copenhagen, the Danish Football Association said.
Just before half-time, the midfielder fell face to face to the ground. His teammates, the Finnish players and the referee immediately called for help and the medics rushed onto the pitch.
Eriksen’s partner Sabrina Kvist Jensen entered the pitch and was comforted by Danish captain Simon Kjaer and goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel.
The Finnish players huddled against their bench and eventually left the pitch while the Inter Milan midfielder was still in treatment.
Eriksen was eventually whisked away to a loud ovation, his teammates walking alongside the stretcher.
Inter Milan team doctor Piero Volpi told The Associated Press that Eriksen had never contracted COVID-19, that he had no health problems to his knowledge and that ‘he had passed all medical examinations without a problem since joining the club in January 2020 from Tottenham.
“But we’ll talk about it when the time is right,” Volpi added of Eriksen’s medical history. “For now, the important thing is that he recovers.”
“I shed a few tears because I was thinking of his family”
“I spend more time with him than with my own family”
Romelu Lukaku was only thinking of Christian Eriksen and his family on Saturday. pic.twitter.com/1gKtWz1Pky
– Squawka News (@SquawkaNews) June 13, 2021
Finland won 1-0 after Joel Pohjanpalo scored in the 60th minute and goalkeeper Lukas Hradecky then saved a penalty.
But in the end, the result seemed like an afterthought.
“Of course you cannot play a game with such feelings,” said Danish manager Kasper Hjulmand.
“What we tried to do was amazing. It’s amazing that the players managed to come out and try to play the second half.
UEFA said both teams had held an emergency meeting before deciding to continue playing. The players returned to the pitch to a huge standing ovation as they started to warm up for the second time.
Hjulmand said teams have the option of finishing the game on Saturday or resuming Sunday.
“The players couldn’t imagine not being able to sleep tonight and then having to get on tomorrow, get on the bus and play a game,” said Hjulmand. “Honestly, it was better to get it over with. “
Eriksen is one of Denmark’s biggest stars and the incident caused instant shock at Parken Stadium, where around 15,000 fans fell into muffled silence.
Some supporters were crying and kissing in the stands.
As the Fans in the stadium waiting for updates, the Finnish fans started chanting “Christian! Christian ”, to which Danish fans then responded by shouting“ Eriksen! Eriksen! “
A huge roar then arose from all the fans when the stadium announcer declared that Eriksen was “stable and awake”.
The incident brought back memories of other footballers who collapsed on the pitch, including Marc-Vivien Foe and Fabrice Muamba.
Foe died while playing for Cameroon in the 2003 Confederations Cup in France, while Muamba needed RCR in 2012 when he collapsed during a match between Bolton and Tottenham at White Hart Lane , in North London.
Muamba, who has fully recovered, wrote “Please God” on Twitter because Eriksen was taken to hospital.