Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg opens up on ‘creepy’ moment he saw Christian Eriksen’s ‘white eyes’ and his arms move around as he received on-pitch treatment for cardiac arrest suffered in opening Euro 2020 defeat by Finland
- Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg has recalled the ‘creepy’ moment amid Eriksen’s collapse
- The Inter Milan star received CPR after collapsing against Finland on Saturday
- Eriksen, 29, is in a stable condition and is receiving treatment in hospital
- Hojbjerg recalls seeing Eriksen’s ‘white eyes’ during the distressing incident
Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg has opened up on the ‘creepy’ moment he saw Christian Eriksen’s ‘white eyes’ in the midst of the Dane’s collapse during Saturday’s distressing events in Copenhagen.
The former Tottenham midfielder, who now plays for Inter Milan, required 13 minutes of CPR after collapsing just before half-time but was taken to hospital in a stable condition, where he remains.
Eriksen thanked fans for their support and concern, and vowed to get to the bottom of why he experienced such a sudden and serious health emergency in a short statement released to Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport via his agent.
And Hojbjerg, who was on the field at the time of the incident, has recalled that Eriksen’s ‘eyes were white’ as first-aiders rushed to give the 29-year-old vital medical assistance during the Group B game.
‘I saw Christian lying there and looking towards the field. His eyes were white and I thought it looked very strange,’ he said.
Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg has recalled the ‘creepy’ moment he saw Christian Eriksen’s ‘white eyes’
Eriksen collapsed during Denmark’s game against Finland in distressing scenes on Saturday
‘I saw [Denmark captain] Simon Kjaer rush off, and then you start thinking what it is. I walked slowly across the bench.
‘More and more first aiders came over, and I could see Simon waving his arms. I stood for a long time with the coaches and talked, and I could see that there are some arms that move with the first aid. That was creepy.’
Hojbjerg, Barcelona’s Martin Braithwaite and Leicester City goalkeeper Schmeichel all spoke on Monday morning at a press conference – the first time any of Eriksen’s Denmark team-mates have appeared publicly since Saturday’s game.
The former Tottenham midfielder, who now plays for Inter Milan, was taken to hospital in a stable condition, where he remains
Hojbjerg shared his recollection of the incident in a moment that shook world football
Schmeichel said: ‘I have chosen to say to myself that this has had a happy ending – it’s not the end yet, but it could have been so much worse.
‘I am grateful to be part of a team that has stood together as much as we have done. And I’m grateful Christian’s still here.
‘I tried to imagine if it was me who was lying there. I knew Christian’s wife, children, and parents were there, so at one point I tried to look for them. It is an inhuman situation for them to go through.’
Danish players spoke for the first time since the incident during a press conference on Monday
WHAT IS A CARDIAC ARREST? HOW IS IT DIFFERENT FROM A HEART ATTACK?
A heart attack and a cardiac arrest are not the same thing
A cardiac arrest is when a person’s heart stops pumping blood around their body and they stop breathing normally
A heart attack is when one of the coronary arteries becomes blocked. The heart muscle is robbed of its vital blood supply and, if left untreated, will begin to die because it is not getting enough oxygen
Many cardiac arrests in adults happen because of a heart attack. This is because a person who is having a heart attack may develop a dangerous heart rhythm, which can cause a cardiac arrest
Source: British Heart Foundation
Braithwaite added: ‘We were all about to lose a friend and a team-mate. I do not remember exactly what I said in the prayer. But it has strengthened my faith, that’s for sure.’
Eriksen released a statement on Monday morning as he continues his recovery. ‘Thank you, I won’t give up. I feel better now – but I want to understand what’s happened,’ he said.
‘I want to say thank you all for what you did for me.’
Denmark boss Kasper Hjulmand added that Eriksen was ‘more concerned’ about the team and his family, and believes he is ready to return to training just two days on from his collapse.
Hjulmand said: ‘Christian was concerned about us and his family. He said, “I don’t remember much, I’m more concerned about how you guys are doing. I think you are feeling worse than I am. I feel as if I’m about to go training now, boys”.
‘That’s typical Christian. He’s a hell of a player, but what a person he is as well.
‘He would like us to play. It was good to see him smile and we will try to get ourselves together and play for Christian.
‘We will try to establish normality as much as possible. Maybe, for some, the time is too short to play football again, but maybe we can use it as a force to get together.’
Denmark return to action to face World No 1 side Belgium at the Parken Stadium in Copenhagen on Thursday afternoon.