Michael Krohn-Dehli knows that at least a few Dutch people will not begrudge him the Carlsberg Man of the Match award for his goalscoring display in Denmark's shock win over the Netherlands.
Krohn-Dehli began his professional career in the Netherlands and had spells with Ajax, RKC Waalwijk and Sparta Rotterdam. It impacted on his personal as well as his professional life, as he revealed: "It's a little bit special for me as I played for eight years in Holland and have a Dutch girlfriend, so I think the whole family was cheering in Holland."
The 29-year-old's performance came as no surprise to coach Morten Olsen, who said: "He was unlucky with injuries during his time in Holland but now he's at a good age, his best age for football, and he played fantastically for us in the qualification games, especially against Norway and Portugal. I hope he'll play for the national side for many more years."
Christian Karembeu, an unused substitute in the final against Italy when France lifted the Henri Delaunay Cup in 2000, presented Krohn-Dehli with the award and said the forward had seen off competition from team-mate Christian Eriksen, of Eredivisie club Ajax.
As for Krohn-Dehli himself, he rated his display as "one of my best games" in a Denmark shirt, adding: "I found space to move in, and I'm very happy I was able to score one against the Dutch. It's now not so necessary to win the rest [of our games] in order to advance to the knockout stage."
A virtuoso goal was the match highlight for Krohn-Dehli, though he was frequently a source of danger to the Dutch with his movement, crossing and shooting ability. Left out of the squad for the 2010 FIFA World Cup – "a mistake" said a laughing Olsen – the Brøndby IF man has made his mark on the continental stage and Portugal, Denmark's next opponents, will have taken note of his threat.
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