Saturday, 26 June 2021 20:07

Staff Reporter.

@EURO2020.

Denmark inflicted a heavy 4-0 defeat over Wales to cruise into the Euro 2020 quarterfinals on Saturday.

Kasper Dolberg scored twice while Joakim Maehle and Martin Braithwaite finished off the scoring late on in an emphatic performance in Amsterdam.

The result sees Denmark progress into the last eight of the competition for the first time since 2004. They are the first nation to reach this stage of the tournament after losing their opening two group stage games.

Wales suffered their biggest ever defeat at the tournament and were unable to match their Euro 2016 performance where they reached the semifinals for the first time in their history.

Backed by a fervent and almost exclusively Danish crowd, Kasper Hjulmand's side led as Kasper Dolberg curled in a fine 27th-minute strike from the edge of the penalty area.

Dolberg struck again in the 48th minute as he seized on an error from Wales substitute Neco Williams to smash in from close range.

That goal deflated Wales, who never looked like clawing their way back into the game as Joakim Maehle added a late third for the jubilant Danes.

Substitute Harry Wilson was then shown a straight red card for a late foul on Maehle before Martin Braithwaite struck a fourth goal in added time as Wales' exhausting campaign ended miserably.

Robert Page's men had performed well to get out of a difficult Group A which also featured Italy, Switzerland and Turkey, but this impressive Danish side proved a challenge too far.

Denmark had already provided the uplifting story of Euro 2020, showing admirable resolve to reach this stage having been galvanised by midfielder Christian Eriksen's recovery from a cardiac arrest.

The next stop on their fairy-tale voyage will be Baku for a quarter-final against the Netherlands or the Czech Republic next Saturday.

As for Wales, they will return home exhausted but, in time, proud of their efforts in reaching the knockout stages again in only their third appearance at a major tournament.