Danish Language Blog

Danish Football for the Win Posted by on Jun 30, 2021 in Sports

Fire nul! A Danish roligan celebrates the victory against Wales. Roligan is a Danish word for a peaceful football fan – it comes from rolig (peaceful) hooligan. (Photo by the blogger.)

Jeg er normalt ikke til fodbold, men… (I normally don’t like football/soccer, but…) Recently, variants of that phrase have been buzzing around everywhere in the air of Danmark. Fodbold-EM [fothbolt-eh-em] (the European Football Championship) is upon us, and almost everybody has a good excuse to be excited! Farvel, nedlukning – goddag, kvartfinale! (Goodbye, lockdown – hello, quarter-final!)

Den 12. juni (the 12th of June), the world stopped. Suddenly, everybody from London to Moscow was talking about the Danish fodboldspiller (football player) Christian Eriksen. In the middle of Denmark’s first kamp (match), against Finland, Eriksen collapsed! If you saw it, it’ll probably be etched into your memory for a while. Eriksen’s holdkammerater (team mates) på landsholdet (the national team) were standing around him, crying. Er han død (is he dead)? That evening, you could literally read the thoughts on the face of every fodbold-fan walking the streets where I live.

Fortunately, Eriksen came back to life. And now the Danish players had a reason to win – for Eriksen! First they beat Rusland (Russia), and no one believed their eyes. Then, five days ago, they tamed den walisiske drage (the Welsh dragon) and beat Wales 4–0. København exploded with joy, and in every Danish by (town) ellevilde fans (fans wild with joy) were wearing rødt og hvidt (red and white) and shouting: fire nul! [feereh nawl!] (Four nil!)

Now, even people who normalt aldrig ser fodbold (normally never watch football) are eagerly anticipating kvartfinalen mod Tjekkiet (the quarter final against Czechia) on Saturday. Who knows, maybe, just maybe, the team of Christian Eriksen will be able to replicate the Danish success of 1992 and become europamestre (European champions) once more?

Kan du lide fodbold? (Do you like football/soccer?)

Så du kampen i går? (Did you watch yesterday’s match?)

Hvem vandt? (Who won?)

Jeg holder med Danmark. (I’m rooting for Denmark.)

Hvor mange mål tror du de scorer? (How many goals du you think they’ll score?)


Vi er røde / vi er hvide / vi står sammen / side om side (We’re red / we’re white / we stand together / side by side – the most shouted part of a famous football song known as ”Re-Sepp-ten”)


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About the Author: Bjørn A. Bojesen

I was born in Denmark, but spent large parts of my childhood and study years in Norway. I later returned to Denmark, where I finished my MA in Scandinavian Studies. Having relatives in Sweden as well, I feel very Scandinavian! I enjoy reading and travelling, and sharing stories with you! You’re always welcome to share your thoughts with me and the other readers.