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Iceland vs Denmark: Under-21 EURO background, form guide, previous meetings

There is plenty of Under-21 history between Iceland and Denmark as they meet again in Győr in the second round of Group C games.

 Denmark celebrate their winning goal against France on Matchday 1
Denmark celebrate their winning goal against France on Matchday 1 UEFA via Getty Images

There is plenty of UEFA European Under-21 Championship history between Iceland and Denmark as they meet again in Győr in the second round of Group C games.

• While Iceland came on out on top in their only previous meeting in a final tournament, the Danes had the better of a dramatic last fixture between the sides.

• However, Iceland will need to recover from a 4-1 loss to Russia in their Group C opener as they take on a Denmark side who are three points better off thanks to a 1-o defeat of France in which substitute Anders Dreyer scored the 75th-minute winner.

2021 Under-21 EUROs: Meet the teams

Previous meetings
• Denmark secured their place in the 2015 finals at Iceland's expense, winning their play-off tie on away goals after a 1-1 aggregate draw. The first game in Aalborg on 10 October 2014 finished scoreless; Nicolaj Thomsen got the crucial goal in the 90th minute of the Reykjavík return four days later, Denmark progressing despite Hólmbert Fridjónsson equalising with a penalty three minutes into added time.

• This is the second time the teams have met in the U21 EURO group stage. On Matchday 3 of the 2011 edition, goals from Kolbeinn Sigþórsson, Birkir Bjarnason and Hjörtur Logi Valgardsson gave Iceland a 3-1 win against tournament hosts Denmark in Aalborg, Bashkim Kadrii managing the sole Danish response. Neither side progressed from Group A, each finishing on three points behind Switzerland and Belarus with Iceland edging out Denmark for third place.

• There were also draws in Iceland in the qualifying campaigns for the 1988 and 2002 finals, 0-0 in each case. Iceland won 3-1 away to Denmark in August 1987 while Denmark were 4-0 home victors in October 2001, but neither side made the final tournament in either competition.

• On the friendly front, Denmark have recorded three wins and a draw in the four games between the countries. In the last such meeting, at Aalborg Stadion on 5 June 2009, Danish Constitution Day, Mike Jensen and Ricki Olsen put the home side 2-0 up before half-time and although Bjarni Vidarsson and Skúli Jón Fridgeirsson levelled for Iceland, Jensen got the winner ten minutes from the end.

2021 Under-21 EUROs: Meet the teams

Form guide
• Iceland are making only their second appearance in the final tournament having featured in those 2011 finals in Denmark. After 2-0 defeats by both Belarus and Switzerland, Eyjólfur Sverrisson's side bowed out with a win against the hosts in Aalborg.

• In qualifying for the 2021 finals, a team coached by Arnar Thór Vidarsson – who was named head coach of the senior side on 22 December 2020 – claimed second place in Group 1 on 21 points, winning seven of their ten games with two of their three defeats coming against section winners Italy (25 points). Iceland were credited with victories in four of their last five matches, including the last two.

2019 Under-21 EURO review

• This is Denmark's fourth successive U21 final tournament, and a sixth participation in the eight or 12-team finals. They were eliminated in the group stage in 2006, 2011 on home soil, 2017 and 2019, but did reach the semi-finals in 2015, losing 4-1 to eventual champions Sweden.

• Two years ago in Italy, the Danes were eliminated having finished second in Group B behind eventual runners-up Germany with six points from their three games (W2 L1).

• Denmark have now won seven of their 16 group stage games in the final tournament overall, losing seven.

• A place in the 2015 semi-finals equalled Denmark's most successful U21 campaign; they also reached the last four in 1992 having previously got to the quarter-finals in 1978 and 1986.

• Albert Capellas succeeded Niels Frederiksen as coach after those 2019 finals and oversaw an unbeaten qualifying campaign, the Spaniard's side picking up 26 points from their ten matches (W8 D2) to win Group 8 by six points from Romania.

• Jacob Bruun Larsen provided seven assists in qualifying, more than any other player, and also set up Dreyer's winner against France on Matchday 1.

How the under-21 finals were won 1996-2017

Links and trivia
• Have played in Denmark:
Patrik Gunnarsson (Viborg 2020, Silkeborg 2021 loan)
Elías Rafn Ólafsson (Midtjylland 2018–, Aarhus Fremad 2019/20 loan, Fredericia 2020– loan)
Mikael Anderson (Midtjylland 2016–, Vendsyssel 2017/18 loan)
Ísak Ólafsson (SønderjyskE 2019–)
Jón Dagur Thorsteinsson (Vendsyssel 2018/19 loan, AGF 2019–)
Sveinn Aron Gudjohnsen (OB 2020– loan)
Stefán Teitur Thórdarson (Silkeborg 2020–)

• Have played together:
Patrik Gunnarsson & Mads Bech Sørensen (Brentford 2018–20)
Elías Rafn Ólafsson, Mikael Anderson & Gustav Isaksen (Midtjylland 2019–)
Stefán Teitur Thórdarson & Rasmus Carstensen (Silkeborg 2020–)