Today at 18:00, a team that hasn’t felt a World Cup atmosphere in 36 years…
Peru Vs Denmark
Peru is playing European country Denmark at Mordovia Arena in Russia for the 2018 World Cup on the 16th of June. We’ve never seen these countries play each other before so expect a fresh, exciting atmosphere! Both teams have four appearances in the World Cup with extremely close FIFA rankings. Peru is one rank ahead of Denmark at 11th place.
It has been 36 years since we’ve seen Peru play in the World Cup. And it has been seventy-eight years since Peru had a run of 10 unbeaten games, however, they just repeated it for their last 10 ten. To top that they were unbeaten in the last nine World Cup Qualifier matches they’ve played. This secured their place in for Russia this year. Their Journey to the finals, however, was unexpected and dramatic. Right in the centre of their campaign, the future looked bad for the South Americans. But then coach Garcea hit a strike of luck, the team started to gain more confidence and momentum. This really worked out for them as they made it through to the cup after two very nervous games against New Zealand.
After previously losing to Bolivia 2-1, Peru won their first qualifier away from home in over 12 years beating them in September 2016. This was a 3-0 victory after substitute Nelson Cabera was deemed ineligible. In August 2017 away against Bolivia, Peru scored two goals shortly before suffering from a nerve crisis. Becoming nervous led to a goal for Bolivia but Peru were victorious finishing 2-1 in the end. Beating New Zealand 1-0 at home already, Christian Ramos bags the second goal for the team. This resulted in a 2-0 victory for Peru in November 2017.
Aged 59, the Argentinian has been coaching Peru since 2015. His most valued change so far is bringing calm to an environment used to despair. He saw potential in a young group of players and stuck by them until good results were present.
Paolo aged 34, is the captain and centre-forward for Peru as well as their star player. After failing his drug test the countries all-time top scorer was absent for the qualifiers. He tested positive for banned performance-enhancing drugs, including cocaine and metabolite benzoylecgonine. His ban was reduced and he has been available for selection since the 3rd of May. This is good news for Garcea because a match without Paolo is like having a gun with no ammo.
Aged 23, Edison is one of the biggest success stories of Peru’s campaign, the versatile midfielder scored five goals. This meant he was a joint-top scorer for Peru during the qualifiers.
Qualifying for the World Cup, Denmark’s performance kept rising from start to finish. Age Haraide’s new ideas were struggling but they beat the Republic of Ireland 5-1 in their last qualifier. The quality from 1986’s ‘Dynamite’ team or the team that reached the quarterfinals in 1998 isn’t present with Denmark anymore. However, with Christian Eriksen on their side, they have a player every opponent will respect and fear.
The crowd booed off Denmark after losing 1-0 to Montenegro at home in September 2016. The same month one year later they beat Poland 4-0 at home, boosting their confidence and spirit as well as their quality. Eriksen scored the only goal of the match leading to a 1-0 victory over Montenegro in October 2017. Next month he scored a hat-trick against the Republic of Ireland leading them to the 5-1 victory in their concluding qualifier.
64-year-old Hareide was a surprising choice to replace coach Morten Olsen in 2016. This was mainly to do with the lack of success from his coaching history in his homeland aside being Norwegian. There’s been a widespread of scepticism for the team since the Dynamite years. Age washed the scepticism away with the fantastic outcome of 2017 in qualifying. His contract runs out in July 2020 and his position is no longer surrounded by the initial doubt that was.
Eriksen is by far the talisman for Denmark scoring an incredible 11 goals during the qualifiers. He’s now up there with who’s considered the world’s top creative midfielders following his performances from November 2016. He now has the attributes to be perceived alongside with the worlds elite players due to his passing ability, calm temperament and for his superb goals.
SPORTS OF THE DAYS VERDICT
We expect to see Peru playing in their best form since this is almost their debut after 36 years missing from the World Cup but do we think they will win? We think Denmark have this one in the bag, Erikson has surpassed excellent form these last two years and we feel his results are enough to scare Peru’s focus back to the Peruvian Primera División.
Google’s win probability is at just 28% for Peru to beat Denmark. The chances of Denmark winning is at 44% with a 28% probability of it being a draw.