A young Denmark team secured the consolation of second place in FIFA World Cup qualifying Group B with a comfortable victory against Malta
Danish coach Morten Olsen made six changes to his starting lineup from Friday's game against Italy and several of the promoted prospects repaid him quickly. The Danes duly overtook Bulgaria, beaten in their concluding qualifier by the Czech Republic.
On eight minutes in Copenhagen one of the newcomers, Peter Ankersen, found Morten Rasmussen in the box with a cross from the right. Rasmussen's header was blocked by Justin Haber in the Malta goal, but the centre-forward had no problem making it 1-0 on the rebound.
Three minutes later, Michael Krohn-Dehli was brought down in the area by John Mintoff and Daniel Agger doubled the advantage from the spot. After 28 minutes it was Andreas Bjelland's turn to benefit from an Ankersen delivery as he nodded home, and once Clayton Faillla had been denied by Kasper Schmeichel in a solitary Maltese raid, Agger scored No4 five minutes before half-time with another penalty, following André Agius's foul on Emil Larsen.
Danish dominance continued in the second half. After William Kvist had been frustrated by Haber, and substitute Kasper Kusk had missed narrowly, Rasmussen notched his second of the night on 74 minutes, converting a Krohn-Dehli centre from close range. With six minutes left, substitute Nicki Nielsen was sent on a solo run by Larsen and wrapped up the win.