Fresh from some raucous dressing-room celebrations, Viktor Fischer told UEFA.com that the self-belief and tight-knit nature of the Denmark team has been key to their impressive qualification for the UEFA European Under-17 Championship semi-finals.
Fischer, who signed for AFC Ajax from FC Midtjylland just prior to the tournament, scored a splendid opener on Friday as Denmark defeated holders England 2-0 to ensure themselves of top spot in Group A. It added to his winner in the opening 3-2 defeat of Serbia, not to mention seven goals in qualifying, and with a top-three berth in the section comes a place in the FIFA U-17 World Cup in Mexico from 18 June.
Hence the double celebration for Fischer and his team-mates, the first Denmark team to reach a youth World Cup. "The mood is fantastic," he said. "It's an honour to be in the semi-finals and in the World Cup; we never expected that – we believed it – but never expected it. It's been a big experience and a great way to develop.
"We have a lot of confidence now. We've been confident all the time, but I think there's still a lot to come. We can get even better. We can improve keeping the ball during the game. Today, though, I don't think we could have improved a lot, but we can improve small things."
Thomas Frank spoke earlier in the week about the five values that underpin his side's ethos – joy, teamwork, responsibility, desire and respect – and Fischer feels such a humble approach, as well as their coach's impact, is serving Denmark well. "He is, of course, proud of us because he is happy just like us," Fischer said.
"We're always thinking about our five values – it is the foundation of our play. It's something we always carry with us. The secret is the mentality that we really want to win all the time.
We are players who just love playing football and we want to win every single game, whether it's Serbia, Norway, England, Brazil; it doesn't matter."
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