Wednesday, October 22, 2014

22 October 1908 - Denmark Spins The A Side

On 22 October 1908, Denmark defeated France in the football semi-finals at the Fourth Olympiad before a crowd of approximately 1,000 at White City Stadium in London. The final score was 17-1.

Only six teams showed up for the tournament, including two from France. The other participants were Great Britain, Denmark, the Netherlands, and Sweden. Bohemia and Hungary had been scheduled to play, but withdrew before the tournament began.

The Danes advanced to the semi-finals by defeating the French "B" side, 9-0, on the first matchday. Against the French "A" side on 22 October, Denmark quickly picked up where it had left off, drawing first blood in the 3rd minute with a goal from forward Sophus Nielsen. Nielsen added another in the 4th minute, then completed his first hat-trick of the day in the 6th minute.

Nielsen went on to score a total of 10 goals that day (3', 4', 6', 39', 46', 48', 52', 64', 66', 76'). Denmark's other goals came from August Lindgren (18', 37'), Vilhelm Wolfhagen (60', 72', 82', 89'), and Nils Middelboe (68').

France's only goal was scored by winger Émile Sartorius in the 16th minute. Although the French were supposed to play the Netherlands in the bronze medal match, they were so humiliated by the loss to Denmark that they declined to play (Sweden took their place).

Denmark's offensive might abandoned them in the gold medal match on 24 October. They lost to Great Britain, 2-0.

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