Denmark wary of Bulgaria threat

  • Last Updated: March 26 2013, 19:41 GMT

A look ahead to Tuesday night's action in World Cup European Qualifying Group B.

Morten Olsen: Impressed by Bulgaria
Morten Olsen: Impressed by Bulgaria

Denmark head coach Morten Olsen feels Bulgaria pose a much greater threat than the Czech Republic to his side's chances of success in World Cup qualifying Group B.

The third-placed Danes are only four points behind tomorrow's opponents Bulgaria and should be full of confidence having beaten the Czechs 3-0 in Olomouc on Friday.

But Olsen watched Bulgaria beat World Cup runners-up Holland 2-1 in a pre Euro 2012 friendly in Amsterdam and knows full well what his side are up against at the Parken Stadium.

He told Ekstra Bladet: "Bulgaria are a better team than the Czech Republic, in my opinion. They have good players and have only lost one of their last eight games.

"(When) we first saw Bulgaria we thought 'wow, this is a good football team' and they have also proved that in their World Cup qualifying matches.''

Indeed, Bulgaria arrive in Copenhagen on the back of a resounding 6-0 victory over bottom side Malta, who host group leaders Italy in Ta'Qali.

There was no qualifying game for the Azzurri on Friday, who instead played Brazil in a friendly the day before, with Mario Balotelli scoring a fantastic goal to salvage a 2-2 draw in Geneva.

The AC Milan forward told figc.it: "I've read a lot of positive things about myself in the last few days, but am I now one of the five best players in the world? I am not one of the strongest. I am just myself and I'm always looking to improve.''

Italy lead Group B with 10 points to Bulgaria's nine, having played one game less, while Malta are yet to register a single point and have only scored once.

Fifth-placed Armenia did not play last week either but go into their home tie with the Czech Republic on the back of two positive friendly results.

A 1-1 draw with Luxembourg followed November's 4-2 victory over Lithuania and Vardan Minasyan's men will be optimistic of earning their first points in the group since they beat Malta 1-0 in September.

The Czechs' heavy defeat to Denmark at the Andruv Stadion was their first competitive reverse since the quarter-finals of Euro 2012.


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