Denmark qualified for the UEFA European Under-17 Championship Elite round as they defeated hosts Lithuania 7-0 in the final game to top qualifying Group 8 with maximum points while Belgium eased past Wales with a 4-0 victory and also came through.
"Our dream before coming here was to collect nine points because we are dreaming of going to the [finals of the] championship," Denmark coach Thomas Frank. "Denmark haven't been there for eight or nine years. Now we have a very talented group, I think we showed that now, so we're looking forward to the elite round."
Before the last matchday Lithuania and Belgium were tied on three points in the battle for the second spot but the mini-tournament hosts were facing a huge task as they had to play Denmark. A third Denmark win was not a surprise but the margin raised eyebrows, especially as Viktor Fischer equalled the tournament record with five goals in the game.
Having netted the only goal in the 1-0 win against Wales in the first match – which was followed by a 2-0 defeat by Belgium – the 16-year-old FC Midtjylland striker was at the top of his game against Lithuania with a variety of strikes including a fine chip over advancing goalkeeper Tomas Švedkauskas and a sly shot into the near corner from the most acute of angles.
"Viktor Fischer is a very talanted player," Frank said. "He has very good skills, a very good touch, he has a great final pass, he is a fantastic finisher and he has learned to work very hard. It's very rare that you see such a talented player working so hard and giving so much to the team. He's somewhat like Messi, a great individual playing for the team."
Belgium had their own heroes in Umberto Carvalho and Benito Raman, both scoring three goals apiece. The pair each scored twice in the first match against Lithuania when Eric Abrams's men found themselves 1-0 down the half-time only to emerge 5-2 winners. They found the target again against Wales.
"We are satisfied with our performance at this tournament as we managed to defeat Lithuania and Wales," said Belgium midfielder Anthony Limbombe, who missed a penalty in injury time against Denmark. "Denmark won the group deservingly, they proved their class against us. But our task is simple – to strive for the European Championship finals."
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