Huge shock as Kazakhstan fight back to beat Denmark in thrilling Euro 2024 qualifier

Kazakhstan’s last competitive win against a team in the world’s top 100 came almost four years ago today: a 3-0 defeat to Scotland on 21 March 2019.

Two more wins, both against lowly San Marino, gave Kazakhstan three wins overall in that European Championship campaign, but they still finished second last and their 2022 World Cup effort was just as disappointing: five losses and three draws finished bottom of the group.

Yet there was evidence in that campaign – away draws in Ukraine and Bosnia-Herzegovina – that Denmark should not take their match in Almaty today lightly.

In a shock defeat that comes alongside their 0-4 loss to Armenia in the 2014 World Cup qualifiers, Denmark squandered a 2-0 half-time lead to lose 2-3 to the Central Asian underdogs this afternoon.

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Two goals from Thursday’s hat-trick hero Rasmus Højlund – the first a nice chip after a long pass from captain Simon Kjær – had given Denmark a solid position at the break. It was a deserved lead based on the balance of the game.

But Kazakhstan shifted into second gear, increasingly threatening Kasper Schmeichel’s goal. Yet a goal never looked likely despite Denmark giving the ball away cheaply every time they had possession.

Little did Jonas Wind know about the corner in the 73rd minute that crashed onto his raised arm to give Kazakhstan a saving penalty which they duly dispatched and then an absolute screamer from Ashak Tagybergen that gave Schmeichel no chance put the home side on level with five minutes remaining.

The Danish defense should have handled the cross that gave an unmarked Abat Aimbetov unlimited freedom to score a winning header in the 89th minute. A second yellow earned the striker a red card, but he watched from the sidelines as a limp Denmark failed to seriously threaten, giving Kazakstan one of their finest ever victories.

Source: The Nordic Page

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