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Danish stars to return for Welsh clash


Denmark's Christian Eriksen (r) and team-mates

Denmark's Christian Eriksen (r) and team-mates

Denmark's Christian Eriksen (r) and team-mates

The Danish FA has reached a short-term agreement with the country's players' union that means senior players will return for the Nations League game against Wales on Sunday, they confirmed last night.

The Danish FA and the senior squad failed to reach a new agreement over commercial conditions, but a joint statement said a deal was in place for the match against Wales in Aarhus.

Which means stars such as Christian Eriksen, Simon Kjaer and Kasper Schmeichel will be back to face Ryan Giggs' side.

Denmark were forced to field a scratch team made up of players from the lower divisions and futsal in Wednesday's 3-0 friendly defeat by Slovakia.

"It is good for the national team and for everyone in Danish football that we can play the important Nations League match with the real national team and once again focus on the sporting aspect," Danish FA chairman Jesper Moller was quoted as saying.

Denmark, ninth in the world rankings, reached the last 16 at this year's World Cup.

"The agreement is a step in the right direction, and the national team players are pleased that they can now focus on the game against Wales on Sunday," players' union representative Mads Oland said.

Little was expected of the makeshift Danish side on Wednesday night with all 11 starting players making their international debuts, but the loss turned out to be a moral victory for the unheralded team as the 31-year-old Haagh played the game of his life between the posts.

A goal by Slovakia's Adam Nemec in the 11th minute could have signalled the opening of the floodgates, but a compact Denmark team defended bravely and they were not breached again until Albert Rusnak scored in the 37th minute.

Coached by former Arsenal and Denmark midfielder John Jensen, the Danes looked well-organised and created a few goal chances of their own in Trnava.

The rearguard continued to hold firm in the second half and Haagh was not beaten again until substitute Anders Foegt, a futsal-playing political science student, unluckily turned the ball into his own net in the 79th minute.