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Jensen pushing right Brøndby buttons

Published: Wednesday 7 April 2010, 15.57CET
Having replaced fellow old boy Kent Nielsen at the helm of Brøndby IF, head coach Henrik Jensen is making a bright start in a job that he found impossible to turn down.
by Peter Bruun
from Copenhagen
Jensen pushing right Brøndby buttons
Brøndby have not had much to celebrate in recent months ©Getty Images
Published: Wednesday 7 April 2010, 15.57CET

Jensen pushing right Brøndby buttons

Having replaced fellow old boy Kent Nielsen at the helm of Brøndby IF, head coach Henrik Jensen is making a bright start in a job that he found impossible to turn down.

Having failed to prosper under one notable former player, Brøndby IF hope new coach Henrik Jensen can revive his old club following a dispiriting end to Kent Nielsen's reign.

Former centre-half Nielsen, from Denmark's 1992 UEFA European Championship-winning squad, was unseated on 25 March after a 3-1 home loss to the Superliga's bottom side, HB Køge, capped a winless run of eight games. The 48-year-old was dismissed, with Brøndby wasting no time plumping for another well-liked ex-player as his replacement.

Jensen explained: "After the Køge defeat, I left the stadium in a hurry to avoid listening to comments from the fans, but I had barely driven off when I had Brøndby director Ole Palmå on the phone. He asked if I was willing to succeed Kent. I asked for a day or two to think about it, but he demanded a yes or no there and then. I said yes. What else could I say? I could not say no to my old club."

Curiously, the 50-year-old former forward had also succeeded a  Brøndby-bound Nielsen in his previous managerial role at AC Horsens.

The new man has now made an impact in Copenhangen's western suburbs. With his 22-year-old son Mike continuing to shine in midfield, Jensen's tenure started with a 3-1 win at SønderjyskE on 28 March, followed by a 2-2 draw against Silkeborg IF – his charges recovering a 2-0 half-time deficit – and Sunday's 2-1 victory at Køge.

"We play a bit more direct than we used to," said the trainer. "The pitches are no good for technical football at this time of year, so for us it is more a question of pushing forward and getting the ball behind the opposition defence as quickly as possible."

Not a recipe to catch the purists' attention, but with Brøndby having waited five years to add to the tenth title they collected in 2004/05, success rather than subtlety is paramount.

 

Last updated: 07/04/10 19.54CET

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