In 1986, Denmark beat Scotland, West Germany and Uruguay – 6-1! – in the group stages. Do you remember that World Cup? It was the key moment of Danish football, I think. Everybody got their eyes into it, maybe because they were turning a little bit. They already did that in ‘82 but then it was like a “What happened just there?” In ‘86, the whole nation was behind the team and for all the small kids who were growing up, like me (I was 7 at the time), it was just football from that time on.
How far do you think Denmark will go at the World Cup? ? I think realistically we have to go through from the group. We have to: we have to have that goal and after that, then you know… after that, it’s difficult to say how far we can go. If we just believe in it and we are together as a team, as we always are, then I think we’ll go far.
?Have you ever been to South Africa before?? No, no.?
Do you think you’ll have time to look around? I hope not.
You’ll be too busy playing. Exactly. We have a lot of time off, but we are going to stay at the ground. Then you can play some tennis or some golf or whatever you want. I think the golf course is the most interesting thing we’re going to see!
Who is Denmark’s key player – your dangerman? England would say Wayne Rooney…? That’s difficult to say, but I also think Wayne Rooney is not just a key player for England. Rooney is nothing without Gerrard, for example. That is exactly how we’re going to see it in Denmark. We have to work together before someone can be a key player, and then the other ones also have to come with a certain level.
Of course we have some players who can decide a game. We have Nicolas Bendtner, the goal scorer. If he can make the goals then of course he is a key player because he’s designing the games. But I think Denmark’s quality is the team – the unit.? ?
In Denmark we have a law saying no one is better than anyone else. It’s called Jangderlong. It’s not really a law, but you’re not allowed to think you’re better than another person.
?If Denmark won the World Cup, what would be the first thing you did when you got back to Denmark? I don’t think I would remember what happened, what I’ve been doing or what I’ve done, because I’d be totally wasted. I hope that I couldn’t remember what I’d been doing when that happens. We’d celebrate like crazy. ?
Interview: June 2010.