After a history of few World Cup and Euros appearances, the Denmark national team has conquered the hearts of fans around the world in the last three decades, making some unlikely runs, including a win in the 1992 Euros. Let’s now take a look at the six best Danish soccer players of all time!
Who are the Best Danish Soccer Players Ever?
- Peter Schmeichel
- Michael Laudrup
- Christian Eriksen
- Brian Laudrup
- Morten Olsen
- Kasper Schmeichel
1. Peter Schmeichel
- 1992 UEFA European Championship winner
- Scored a penalty goal in 2000
- Most capped international in Denmark’s history
Considered one of the greatest goalkeepers of all time, Peter Schmeichel was the leader of a Denmark side that shocked the world by winning the 1992 UEFA Euros and the Confederations Cup in 1995.
Schmeichel allowed only three goals in the 1992 Euro campaign as Denmark became the biggest underdog to be crowned European Champions. The former Manchester United goalkeeper holds the record for both appearances and best goals allowed ratio with 51 clean sheets in 121 matches. Peter Schmeichel also scored a penalty goal in a 2-2 friendly against Belgium in 2000, making him one of the few goalies to have scored with their national team.
2. Michael Laudrup
- 1995 Confederations Cup winner
- All-Star at the 1998 FIFA World Cup
- Two-time Danish Player of the Year
As one of the very few players to have suited up for both FC Barcelona and Real Madrid, Michael Laudrup dominated the scene in Europe thanks to his silky touch and great goal-scoring ability.
Despite not making the 1992 Euro squad due to differences with the head coach, Laudrup captained Denmark in the 1995 Confederations Cup win and led his country to a quarterfinal appearance in the 1998 FIFA World Cup. His performances in the 1998 tournament in France earned him a spot on the All-Star team as he was crucial to the Danish win against Nigeria in the first round providing two assists.
3. Christian Eriksen
- Highest active goal scorer in the Danish national team
- Top five in appearances
- Over 60 goal contributions in his international career
Since his senior national team debut back in 2010, Christian Eriksen has become the biggest star on the Danish side. His classy touch and unmatched game vision make him one of the best number ten of his generation.
Over the years, Eriksen has become a complete midfielder who can score in any way, especially from set pieces, and who can offer good defensive support. His great plays have contributed to creating a new golden Danish generation that reached the quarterfinals in the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia, the semifinals at Euro 2020, and qualification for the 2022 FIFA World Cup.
4. Brian Laudrup
- 1992 UEFA Euro winner
- Over 30 goals for Denmark
- 1995 Confederations Cup winner
Brian Laudrup, together with his brother Michael, was one of the key players in Denmark’s great success in the 1990s. Unlike his brother, Brian took part in the 1992 Euro campaign and provided two crucial assists in the semifinal to help Denmark reach the final.
The former Rangers player was a big factor in the 1995 Confederations Cup, providing an assist against Saudi Arabia and scoring in the penalty shootout win against Mexico. However, his best display with the Denmark national team came in the 1998 FIFA World Cup, where he scored two goals and provided two assists as Denmark were eliminated by Brazil in the quarterfinals.
5. Morten Olsen
- Top ten in appearances all-time for the Danish national team
- Captained Denmark at the 1986 World Cup
- One of the two Danish defenders with at least 100 international caps
Despite not having played for any top European soccer club, Morten Olsen is one of the biggest legends in the history of the Danish national team. The sweeper had over 102 appearances for Denmark, which makes him the eighth-most-capped player of all time, scoring two goals.
Olsen is among the captains with the most appearances for Denmark as he led his country at the 1986 FIFA World Cup and 1988 UEFA Euros. Morten Olsen is one of the most versatile players in Danish soccer history as he played in many positions, including winger, defensive midfielder, and center-back.
6. Kasper Schmeichel
- Saved two game-deciding penalties at the 2018 FIFA World Cup
- Top three in appearances among Danish goalkeepers
- Over 40 clean sheets in eighty appearances
After a Euro 2012 campaign as the backup goalkeeper, Kasper Schmeichel, the son of the legendary Peter, made his way to the starting goalkeeping spot, quickly establishing himself as one of the top goalies in Europe.
Known as a penalty specialist, Kasper Schmeichel’s saves from the spot were crucial for Denmark throughout the team’s journey to the quarterfinals in the 2018 FIFA World Cup. Schmeichel saved a penalty against Peru to seal a 1-0 group stage win and stopped Luka Modric’s penalty in the quarterfinals to send the match to extra time. The OG Nice goalkeeper also had a fundamental role in the team’s qualification journey to the 2022 FIFA World Cup, keeping a clean sheet in each of the qualifying matches.
- Daniel Agger
- Frank Arnesen
- Thomas Helveg
- Martin Jørgensen
- Simon Kjær
- Preben Elkjær Larsen
- Flemming Povlsen
- Dennis Rommedahl
- Allan Simonsen
- Jon Dahl Tomasson