Christian Eriksen was called up to the Denmark squad on Tuesday, the first time he has been selected since he suffered a cardiac arrest at the European Championship last year.
Kasper Hjulmand included the midfielder in the 23-man squad that will play the Netherlands and Serbia in friendlies this month. The Serbia match will be Eriksen’s first return to Parken, where he collapsed against Finland.
“I expect Christian to go in and be a deciding factor for our team,” Hjulmand told the Danish newspaper Ekstra Bladet. “I did not expect him to play right now, realistically I thought he would be ready by the summer. However Christian is with the squad because he is the best in that position.”
Eriksen, 30, signed for Brentford in January as a free agent for the rest of the season after Internazionale terminated his contract because of Serie A rules. Eriksen was fitted with a special heart-starting device known as an Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator (ICD), which is not permitted in Italy’s top flight.
Denmark have qualified for the World Cup in Qatar which starts in November. Eriksen said in January that it was “a goal, a dream” to play in the tournament.
“Christian is in a really good physical shape,” Hjulmand said. “I saw him against Burnley on Saturday where he was the best player out there. He is a player that thinks faster than most.”