Great Britain

‘He was gone’: Christian Eriksen had cardiac arrest, Denmark doctor says

Christian Eriksen suffered a cardiac arrest and “was gone” before being swiftly resuscitated on the pitch, Denmark’s team doctor, Morten Boesen, has said.

“He was gone,” Boesen said. “We started the resuscitation and we managed to do it. How close were we to losing him? I don’t know, but we got him back after one defib [defibrillation], so that’s quite fast.”

Denmark’s coach, Kasper Hjulmand, revealed the squad had spoken to Eriksen on Sunday and that it was great “to see him smile”, and Boesen praised the medical team at Parken, where Denmark played Finland.

“How quickly they reacted was decisive I would say,” he said. “The time from when it happens until he receives help is the most important factor. And that was a short period of time. That was decisive.

“They are now doing a series of tests at the hospital that can maybe give some of the answers him and I are looking for. But he is awake and is answering questions clearly. His heart is beating again … The tests that have been done so far look fine. We don’t have an explanation to why it happened.”

Eriksen collapsed during the first half of the Euro 2020 game and after receiving CPR on the pitch was taken to hospital. The game resumed, Finland winning 1-0, the players having decided to continue after hearing that Eriksen was conscious and wanted them to carry on.

Hjulmand said in a 45-minute press conference on Sunday that the player could hardly remember anything from the incident but that he was in a good mood when he had a video call with the rest of the squad. Hjulmand said: “Christian was concerned about us and he doesn’t remember a lot about yesterday so he asked how the team was doing.

“Christian is a big person. He felt that he can play because he is at his happiest on the pitch. He said this morning that we maybe had it worse than him because he wants to get out on the training pitch again. We have to see if we can gather ourselves and go out and play for Christian.”

Uefa has been criticised for only offering Denmark a choice of restarting their game against Finland on Saturday night or at noon on Sunday. Boesen and Hjulmand questioned the decision to resume the match.

“I don’t think the right decision was to play the game,” he said. “We have had help from a psychological point of view at the hotel last night. Everyone expressed their feelings and how they saw the situation, and everyone was pleased we did this and talked it through.”

Hjulmand said: “No, we should not have played. We will try tomorrow to establish normality as much as possible.”

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