Holders can still pose a threat: Denmark

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1 Peter Schmeichel Manchester United

An Old Trafford stalwart and considered by many to be the best goalkeeper in the world (Age 32, 83 caps).

2 Thomas Helveg Udinese

Right back, made his debut against Hungary in 1994. A good reputation in Italy's Serie A (24, 12).

3 Marc Rieper West Ham

Tall, hard-tackling central defender, a Hammers regular. Not very fast on his feet but solid (27, 37).

4 Lars Olsen Brondby

Joined Brondby after spells abroad with Turkish, Belgian and Swiss teams. Captain of Denmark 1988-94 (35, 84).

5 Jes Hogh Fenerbahce

Denmark's top sweeper with distinguished past as attacking midfielder. Played for Brondby and Aarhus (29, 21).

6 Michael Schjonberg Odense

Physically powerful, attacking left wing-back with a good record as a goalscorer (29, 12).

7 Brian Steen Nielsen Odense

Fast full-back with good technique. Returned to Odense in 1995 after two years with Fenerbahce (27, 34).

8 Claus Thomsen Ipswich Town

Struggled at first in Suffolk but has settled down as a skilful utility player who can play almost anywhere (25, 5).

9 Mikkel Beck Fortuna Cologne

Goal-hungry centre-forward promoted from Under-21 team last summer, Transfer target for Rangers (22, 8).

10 Michael Laudrup Real Madrid

World-class ball-player who voluntarily missed Euro 92 triumph. Will move to Japan this summer (31, 87).

11 Brian Laudrup Rangers

Michael's younger brother has become an Ibrox hero with his brilliant attacking skills (27, 62).

12 Torben Piechnik Aarhus

Former Liverpool central defender who has been called back into squad after three-year absence (32, 13).

13 Henrik Larsen Lyngby

Midfielder who scored both goals against Netherlands in Euro 92 semi. Later with Aston Villa (30, 36).

14 Jens Risager Brondby

Hard-tackling left-back. Strong in defence but has technical deficiencies, tends to hog the ball (25, 11).

15 Erik Bo Andersen Rangers

Joined Brian Laudrup at Ibrox in February after his goals helped Aalborg to their first Danish title (25, 5).

16 Lars Hogh Odense

Oldest member of the Danish squad, reserve goalkeeper with 1986 World Cup squad in Mexico (37, 8).

17 Allan Nielsen Brondby

A busy, hard-working midfield runner who trained as a youngster with Bayern Munich (25, 3).

18 Kim Vilfort Brondby

Reliable all-round midfielder who is strong in the air. Scored against Germany in Euro 92 final (33, 74).

19 Stig Tofting Aarhus

A surprise squad selection, a midfielder who has had a good season in the Danish Super League (26, 2).

20 Jacob Laursen Derby County

Rugged right-back who agreed to move to the Baseball Ground from Silkeborg last week (24, 11).

21 Soren Andersen Aalborg

Forward, new to the squad, another man to impress Moller-Nielsen in the domestic league (26, 1).

22 Mogens Krogh Brondby

Second-choice goalkeeper, was signed by Brondby to replace Schmeichel in 1991 (32, 5). The team

No one, it seems, expects the Danes to hold on to their crown but some of the heroes of Sweden are still around: the daunting Schmeichel in goal and the combative Vilfort in midfield. After resolving some rows with the coach, the Laudrup brothers will add their world-class talents to the side. Look out, too, for Helveg, an accomplished wing-back with Udinese in Italy.

The coach

Even if the Danes retain the Championship, Richard Moller-Nielsen will be off in the summer, when he starts a new job as coach of Finland. He moved up through the ranks with Denmark and replaced the wily Sepp Piontek in 1990. Two years later, as latecomers to the party, he took his side to Euro 92 glory.

The fact file

Previous appearances in finals: 1964 (fourth place). 1984 (semi-finals). 1988 (first round). 1992 (winners).

Qualifying record: W6, D3, L1 (Group Two runners-up).

Top scorer in qualifiers: 5 Vilfort.

Most appearances in qualifiers: 10 Schmeichel, Rieper, M Laudrup, Steen Nielsen.

Population 5.1m. Registered clubs 1,555. Registered players 338,000. Professional players 350.

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