FIFA Women's World Cup 70 Day Countdown: Day 9 - Denmark Snapshot

As we enter day nine of Edge of the Crowd’s electrifying 70-day countdown to the highly anticipated 2023 FIFA Women’s World Cup, we’re diving headfirst into a whirlwind tour of the fierce and fabulous teams gracing this year’s tournament.

Join us on this journey as we dish out the inside scoop on each squad's strengths, weaknesses, players to keep an eye on and what a pass mark might be for each nation.

Next up, we have World Cup hopefuls from Group D, Denmark.

FIFA Women's World Cup appearances: 4 (1991, 1995, 1999, 2007)

Best Performance in a FIFA Women's World Cup: Quarter-finals (1991, 1995)

Players to watch

The undoubted matriarch of Danish football, Sanne Troelsgaard Nielsen has been a star for the Danish team for a generation. Since making her debut in 2008, Treolsgaard Nielsen has played 176 times for the Danish national team, scoring 55 goals. With her last goal in late 2021 as part of the qualification for the tournament, Troelsgaard Nielsen will be desperate to hit the scoreboard again in this tournament.

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At the other end of the age spectrum, Sofie Svava is just 22 years old, and already has 35 caps to her name for the Danish side. Now playing at Real Madrid, the midfielder has shown great promise in defense and the midfield in her young career and will be key in keeping the Danish side moving to give them a chance of progressing to the knockout stage.

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Mille Gejl Jensen is another young player that is budding for the Danish side and will play a key role this tournament. The 23-year-old already has seven international goals to her record, in just 23 appearances. The North Carolina Courage star will be a strong chance to continue that record as the Danes push to return to the knockouts for the first time in her lifetime.

2023 form

Denmark has only had two matches in 2023 so far, with two 1-0 wins on the board. A win over Sweden kicked off the year in early April, with Stine Larsen finding the back of the net to win the match in injury time. Unfortunately for Larsen, less than two weeks later, her World Cup dream ended with a torn ACL.

The other scalp Denmark has claimed this season is that of Japan, where an own goal by Moeka Minami was the difference between the two sides. Last year, Denmark did enough in the Euro qualifying stage to seal a place in the tournament but finished third in its group behind Spain and Germany.

Strengths and Weaknesses

Strengths: Denmark has the firepower to go with anyone. Despite missing Larsen, captain Pernille Harder (70 goals), Treolsgaard Nielsen and Nadia Nadim (38 goals) give the Danes plenty of players who can take advantage in front of goal.

Stars like Harder and Nadim will be less familiar to Australian audiences after combining for some time off the bench when Denmark played the Matildas last year, but Denmark is ranked inside the top 20 in the world for very good reason.

Weaknesses: If there is one area of weakness for the Danes, they don't have an experienced goalkeeper to call on. Lene Christensen, aged 23 and with 20 caps to her name, is the most experienced keeper in the squad, with the rest of the goalkeepers to have spent time in the Danish squad over the past 12 months combining for 13 caps between five players.

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Will the lack of experience between the posts be a factor in a knockout match or the dying stages of a group match?

Pass mark

The Danes are ranked in the top 20 in the world and will come into the tournament with high expectations. A tough group awaits Denmark, with fellow group members England and China also ranked highly.

At a minimum, Denmark will expect four points from the group stages, but a pass mark is progressing to the knockouts really. There is a strong chance, if the draw plays out, that Denmark could face Japan in the Round of 16, and that could lead to a quarter-final berth.

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