Morten Olsen chose Tottenham Hotspur midfielder Christian Eriksen to pick on after Denmark lost to Portugal via a last minute goal earlier this week.
Olsen slammed the Spurs star, suggesting he hadn’t done enough to develop at White Hart Lane following a high profile and big money move from Ajax.
However, Eriksen has shifted the blame away from himself and responded to the criticism by suggesting Portugal’s tactics in terms of closing out space was the main reason for Denmark’s 1-0 defeat.
“It could have been better. There was very little space. We tried to find some opportunities and create a little, but there was not much room for it. It was a day where we just didn’t hit it,” he told Bold.
Eriksen has accepted that he could have done more as one of the higher profile and supposedly more creative players in the Danish side and has revealed a desire, which should benefit Tottenham heading into a busy winter break.
“I got the ball and should have brought myself into the game even more. I am not getting the goals and assists and that is not what I want. You always hope that you can play your best but it was not like that today.”
Reducing the space that a side has to play in is a common tactic used by a lot of sides who are afraid of creative players in the opposition.
One of the reasons that Eriksen was successful in his first season at Spurs was because sides didn’t know how to contain him but he’s now being challenged on all fronts and it’s up to him to respond.
There are ways for Eriksen to get more involved in games with Tottenham and Denmark and it relates to finding that space and freedom so he can get on the ball and utilise his creative skills.
Teams can learn a lot from the way Portugal played against him but as far as club and country are concerned, it’s encouraging he’s already thinking of ways to improve.