By Mukwuzi Joseph
Denmark have reached the semi-final of Euro 2020 after goals by Thomas Delaney and Kasper Dolberg were enough to overcome a strike by in-form Czech marksman Patrik Schick.
The Danes took an early lead in their quarter-final against the Czech Republic in Baku, when Borussia Dortmund midfielder Thomas Delaney headed home from a corner in the fifth minute.
The Danes were unchanged from their 4-0 win over Wales in Amsterdam and looking to secure a semi-final spot at Wembley on July 7, where they could face England.
The Czechs had progressed from England’s group as one of the best third-placed teams and then pulled off a shock victory against 10-man Holland in the last 16, but were unsettled by going behind so early.
Mikkel Damsgaard almost celebrated his 21st birthday with a goal when breaking into the penalty area and taking the ball around the goalkeeper, but his effort was cleared off the line before Delaney sent a scuffed shot wide.
At the other end, Tomas Holes forced a smart save from goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel from an angled shot – but it was Denmark who went 2-0 up just before half-time when Kasper Dolberg volleyed in a wonderful left-wing cross from Joakim Maehle.
Czech coach Jaroslav Silhavy made two changes for the second half, with Michael Krmencik and Jakub Jankto replacing Holes and Lukas Masopust.
Schmeichel parried away a 25-yard effort from Krmencik and then saved Antonin Barak’s effort.
Patrik Schick pulled a goal back in the 49th minute, converting a cross from Vladimir Coufal to take his tournament tally to five.
Denmark substitute Yussuf Poulsen forced two decent stops from Tomas Vaclik, who also stuck out a boot to deny Maehle at the near post.
However, neither side could find another goal as Denmark held out to book their place in the semi-finals.