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euros united WATCH: Emotional scenes as Denmark and Belgium players salute Christian Eriksen

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Denmark fans react after the ball is kicked out in the 10th minute of the match to applaud Denmark's Christian Eriksen who remains in hospital after collapsing during the match between Denmark and Finland last Saturday. REUTERS/Stuart Franklin

Denmark fans react after the ball is kicked out in the 10th minute of the match to applaud Denmark's Christian Eriksen who remains in hospital after collapsing during the match between Denmark and Finland last Saturday. REUTERS/Stuart Franklin

Denmark fans react after the ball is kicked out in the 10th minute of the match to applaud Denmark's Christian Eriksen who remains in hospital after collapsing during the match between Denmark and Finland last Saturday. REUTERS/Stuart Franklin

Tears were shed into Copenhagen's Parken Stadium, as the players of Denmark and Belgium paid an emotional tribute to Christian Erikson in Thursday afternoon's Euro 2020 game,

Kevin De Bruyne came off the bench to fire Belgium into the last 16 with a 2-1 victory, but it was the moment on ten minutes of the match that will live long in the memory.

Play stopped briefly as the clocked ticked around to 10 – the shirt number worn by Eriksen – as the players of both sides and officials joined the spectators in a moving moment’s applause for the Inter Milan midfielder.

Eriksen is still in hospital and it has been confirmed that he will have an implantable cardioverter defibrillator (ICD) inserted into his chest to control his heart condition.

Five days after Eriksen sudden fall to the ground on the Parken Stadium pitch had stunned the football world, Yussuf Poulsen fired the Danes into an early lead as FIFA’s number one-ranked team were outplayed until De Bruyne arrived to light up proceedings.

Kasper Hjulmand’s men could hardly have got off to a better start when they took the lead with less than two minutes gone.

Jason Denayer’s careless pass out of defence was picked off by Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg and when he fed Poulsen, the striker smashed a low shot across keeper Thibaut Courtois and inside the far post.

Courtois found himself in the thick of action early on, diving at the feet of wing-back Joakim Maehle and then fielding Daniel Wass’ header back across goal inside the opening six minutes with Belgium in uncharacteristic disarray.

Belgium simply could not force their way into the game as they repeatedly squandered possession to leave Danish keeper Kasper Schmeichel untested, and Courtois was relieved to see Eriksen’s replacement Mikkel Damsgaard curl a 35th-minute effort just past the upright.

Roberto Martinez sent on De Bruyne as a half-time substitute in a desperate search for inspiration – he was soon to be followed by Axel Witsel and Eden Hazard – and the move paid dividends within 10 minutes.

Romelu Lukaku ran away from the Danish defence before squaring for De Bruyne, who expertly dummied his way into space before rolling the ball into the path of the fast-arriving Thorgan Hazard to thump into the net.

But it was his sumptuous 70th-minute strike, which flew past the helpless Schmeichel and into the bottom corner, which ultimately won the day and maintained the Red Devils’ perfect start.

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Martin Braithwaite might have rescued a point three minutes from time, but saw his header from substitute Andreas Skov Olsen’s cross clip the crossbar and run away to safety.

"We've felt an enormous backing from the people, from all the people following us, this whole stadium and all the people we've met and felt the love from – that's what did it in the end," said Denmark coach Kasper Hjulmand.

"Also that this group is extremely good together. We can take a lot with us from this match. Now we'll close this one. I'm already thinking about the Russians. We are not finished in this tournament."

Denmark midfielder Thomas Delaney also spoke of his emotion after the game as he added: "We accepted that it's hard for us to be here again and sing the national anthem.

"We went into our circle before the match and pushed some buttons and said, 'Now are we going to give all we have.' We've prepared well and waited for this for years. That makes me extremely proud."

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