Key workers praise ‘phenomenal’ team effort to help Denmark’s Christian Eriksen

The first-round match in Copenhagen was suspended while Eriksen received treatment.

Denmark’s Christian Eriksen
Denmark’s Christian Eriksen

Key workers in London have expressed sympathy for Danish footballer Christian Eriksen, as England started their own Euro 2020 campaign.

Medical workers praised the swift response from staff and players after the 29-year-old midfielder collapsed just before half time during his side’s match against Finland on Saturday.

Those invited to a special fanzone in Trafalgar Square to watch Gareth Southgate’s side take on Croatia on Sunday said Eriksen’s improved condition was a “relief”.

The first-round match in Copenhagen was suspended with players from both sides in clear distress before resuming some two hours later after Eriksen was said to be in a stable condition.

Denmark fans react as Christian Eriksen receives medical attention after collapsing in Copenhagen
Denmark fans react as Christian Eriksen receives medical attention after collapsing in Copenhagen (Martin Meissner/AP)

Dr Sarah Helps, 50, a consultant clinical psychologist, said the response from other team members and medical staff at the match had been “phenomenal”.

“I thought the response from the team was absolutely amazing and a demonstration of people working as a team and looking after each other,” she said.

“The speed at which the emergency medical attention came was phenomenal.”

Eriksen was treated by medics on the pitch before being taken to hospital and received prolonged CPR.

Rosie Baldock, 26, an emergency resource dispatcher for the London Ambulance Service, said the incident “shows the importance of early CPR” and “early medical intervention”.

“Anyone who watched that match yesterday should go to their nearest St John’s, sign up to your nearest CPR section,” she said.

“It’s really important.

“Early medical intervention can really elevate chances of survival.”

Fans watch England v Croatia in Trafalgar Square
Fans watch England v Croatia in Trafalgar Square (Jonathan Brady/PA)

Ms Baldock’s brother Sam Baldock, 28, who watched the match in the fanzone with her, added: “All our thoughts are with Christian Eriksen.

“Football is doing an amazing thing by carrying on.”

John McCarthy, 41, a Transport for London (TfL) staff trainer, said he had been “absolutely gutted” following the incident.

“I’m a Spurs fan and he was one of my favourite players,” he told the PA news agency.

“To see that happening and unfolding, it was really awful. I didn’t know what to do with myself.

“When we heard the news about 30 minutes later that he was alright it was a proper relief because it really would have cast a shadow over today and the rest of the tournament.”

Messages of support for Eriksen have poured in from fellow players, politicians and celebrities alike.

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge tweeted: “Encouraging news about Christian Eriksen, we are all thinking about him and his family. Well done to the medical team and (English referee) Anthony Taylor for their calm and swift action. W.”

Former Tottenham striker Gary Lineker, who anchored the BBC’s studio coverage of the Denmark v Finland match, described the incident as “the most difficult, distressing and emotional broadcast I’ve ever been involved with”.

The BBC apologised following complaints that it continued to broadcast while Eriksen was receiving emergency treatment.

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