Is Denmark hero Mikkel Damsgaard worth the hype?

Martin Macdonald
Mikel Damsgaard scores against Russia for Denmark, Euro 2020

Mikel Damsgaard scores against Russia for Denmark, Euro 2020

Denmark hero Mikkel Damsgaard has been linked with several European giants this season following his exploits with Sampdoria in Serie A and now in the European Championship.

The Danish international only joined the Italian outfit last summer from Superligaen side FC Nordsjaelland for a fee in the region of  £5.8 million (€6.7m), but now his market value has trebled to around £17.5m (€20m).

Damsgaard helped Claudio Ranieri’s men to mid-table in the Italian top flight in 2020/21, with his two goals and four assists coming in 18 starts this past campaign. But it’s his overall displays that have really caught the eye of the continent’s elite clubs.

He ranks highly when compared to other players in his position for pressures, tackles, interceptions, blocks and clearances, alongside aerial duals, largely thanks to his 5’10 frame.

Though his goal contributions are not eyewatering, he is still learning his trade at just 20-years-old and is part of a Sampdoria side who can run hot or cold.

In terms of his creativity, he averaged 2.3 completed dribbles and 3.2 completed crosses per match in Serie A.

Damsgaard at the Euros

Before the European Championship the two clubs most notably interested in the young Dane were Tottenham and West Ham.

However, he will have very recently gained himself plenty more admirers due to his performances with Denmark.

Damsgaard has been the brightest spark of the Denmark side which has now qualified for the second round of the tournament.

His best moment undoubtedly came versus Russia on Monday evening when he received the ball to the edge of the box and beautifully curled an effort into the top right corner with very little backlift.

After being left out of the opening match against Finland, he would be called in, in almost impossible circumstances, to replace Christian Eriksen in the starting XI for the next match against Belgium.

In that fixture, he very nearly opened the scoring, showing lightning quick feet inside the box before sending an unlucky strike wide.

Denmark, certainly, have unearthed a gem.