Two expatriates of the Bangladesh national football team – Denmark-born Jamal Bhuyan and Finland-born Tariq Kazi expressed heartfelt sympathy to Danish footballer Christian Eriksen, who collapsed shortly before half-time in Denmark’s opening match of UEFA Euro 2020 against Finland on Saturday.
Both Jamal and Tariq, who are in Qatar with the national team, resumed training at Qatar University ground after one daybreak on Sunday, ahead of their eighth and last group match of the joint qualifiers for FIFA World Cup 2022 and AFC Asian Cup 2023 against Asian giants Oman, scheduled to be held on Tuesday at Jassim Bin Hamad Stadium in Doha at 11:00pm.Bangladesh’s 31-year-old Danish-born captain Jamal, who played two matches against Eriksen during his early days, recalled those memories before the day’s session.
“I played against him (Eriksen) twice when we were 15 or 16 before he went to Ajax. Ahead of our first match, my coach said that he had a ‘Wonder Kid’ (Eriksen). I thought what can he do, I will beat his wonder kid. When the match started, we took the lead but he (Eriksen) scored two goals. However, we won that match. In the second match, he again scored two goals and from that moment I have known that guy was the wonder kid. After four-month, Ajax bought him,” said Jamal on Sunday.
“I didn’t know that he had a heart attack. When I heard about it, I felt really bad. Not only for him, also for the players, his teammates, his family as well. It feels really bad. I think every football player - professional or amateur -- have prayed for him,” the Bangladesh captain added.
Another Finland-born Bangladeshi footballer Tariq Kazi also expressed his wholehearted sympathy to Eriksen.
“Finland started their European Championship campaign yesterday against Denmark; they won with the fantastic result 1-0. Their result is a very secondary thing, last night as we know what happened to Christian Eriksen is very sad and all my thoughts and feelings go towards Christian Eriksen and his family. I hope he is doing well and he will recover fast and we will see him again on the pitch soon,” the 20-year-old defender said.
Tariq also said there was a little bit of rivalry between him and Jamal who supported their respective countries during the game.“As you know Jamal from Denmark and I’m from Finland, there is a bit of rivalry between us. I told him yesterday that Finland would win and obviously, he (Jamal) supports Denmark. And I have a better outcome of this match,” he ended.
Bangladesh national team footballers and coaching staff also expressed their heartfelt sympathy towards Eriksen, his family and Danish national football team as well as prayed for his fast recovery.