On the 11th October Lionel Messi delivered a masterclass. Away to Ecuador he scored the hat-trick that spared Argentina’s blushes, and carried them through to Russia 2018. Considered one of the all time great qualifying performances, surrounded by a squad boasting some of world footballs finest attacking talent, Messi again stood head and shoulders above the rest to remind people why he is considered the greatest of all time.
On Tuesday 14th November, Christian Eriksen produced a similar feat, taking the Aviva Stadium by storm, and breaking Irish hearts. With Ireland taking an early lead through a Danish mistake, they had the wind in their sails, and with the crowd roaring them on the pendulum was very much swinging in Ireland’s favour.
However, after missing a few opportunities to double their lead, Denmark equalised. An unfortunate deflection of Cyrus Christie carried the ball into his own net, bringing the game to 1-1, and left the game in the balance. With the first leg finishing 0-0, Denmarks equaliser ensured that the game would be decided inside 90 minutes, and set the stage for someone to become a hero.
It only took 3 from the restart before Christian Eriksen answered that call. Taking a first time shot from the edge of the area, and sending it into the top corner off the underside of the crossbar, leaving Randolph completely helpless.
It only got better from there for the Danish technician, a second half brace, sealed his hat-trick, and confirmed Denmarks place in Russia. A stunning individual performance that will live long in Danish hearts.
Republic of Ireland 1-5 Denmark (1-5 aggregate): Christian Eriksen nets stunning hat-trick as Ireland miss out on… pic.twitter.com/OCVMusuojY
— Fans Week (@Fans_week) November 15, 2017
The only disappoint for Christian Eriksen will be that this performance won’t draw deserved comparisons to his Argentine counterpart, the plaudits that Messi earned for his performance were world wide, and in many respects Eriksens performance was superior. Where only Argentina could benefit from their result against Ecuador, Ecuador who were out of form and unable to qualify for Russia, Ireland V Denmark hung finely in the balance. It was a straight shoot out, winner takes all, and Eriksen took the game by the throat and made sure it was Denmarks night.
— Last Word On Spurs🎙 (@LastWordOnSpurs) November 15, 2017
Tottenham and Denmark fans will not be shocked by Eriksens performance, his form has been formidable for the North London club this season. Where he excelled last season, he has taken his game up another level this season, providing consistently for both club and country. Statistically, since joining Tottenham he is only bettered by Meust Ozil for chances created in the Premier League.
Much like Premier League legend Paul Scholes, he lets his performances do the talking, keeps things ticking over, and provides the creative spark that allows his team mates to star, but once he leaves the pitch you seldom hear from him. The ideal professional, modest, but extremely confident in his own ability.
When Barcelona were circling Coutinho last summer, it was surprising that they didn’t turn their attention to the Danish maestro. With so many of their creative midfielders reaching the latter stages of their careers, Eriksen would have adapted almost seamlessly to their style of play.
Maybe it’s because he doesn’t carry the arrogance of a superstar, or the aloofness that his position is untouchable, or even boast a strong marketing brand, that he continuously sneaks under the radar, but he will offer a work rate and consistency which is second to none.
Tottenham fans, who will already be chewing their nails over next summers transfer window, will now have more cause for concern. If Eriksen can deliver in the same way he has throughout Denmarks qualifying campaign, and as emphatically has he did yesterday evening, it won’t be too long before the vultures start circling.
— Christian Eriksen (@ChrisEriksen8) November 14, 2017