Wales come crashing back to reality with Nations League defeat in Denmark
Ryan Giggs was given a rude awakening from his dream start to life as Wales manager by the sheer brilliance of Christian Eriksen.
The Spurs star shrugged off any acrimony following Denmarkâs bitter fallout with their footballing hierarchy to take centre stage in Aarhus.
A first-half strike against the run of play continued his hot streak for his country, before he fired home from the spot to take his prolific scoring r un to 15 goals in his last 18 matches.
The 2-0 triumph sent Denmark to the top of Nations League B Group four as Wales paid the price for Saturday nightâs travel disruption following their emphatic Ireland victory.
Denmark managed to squeeze in a pair of training sessions after striking a truce to end the civil war between their star players and football chiefs just 72 hours before the visit of Giggs and Wales.
Eriksen and Kasper Schmeichel, who played a central role in agreeing a temporary playing deal, were back in the starting XI to face a Wales side led by Gareth Bale for the first time after he proved he was back to his blistering best against Ireland.
Wales were riding high after the Giggs era got off to a flying start, but they were brought back down to Earth as technical issues with their plane left them grounded at Cardiff Airport.
They eventually arrived just 16 hours prior to kick-off, but showed little sign of fatigue in the opening stages at Ceres Park as they asserted their dominance thanks to the midfield trio of Ethan Ampadu, Joe Allen and Aaron Ramsey.
But Denmark came close to hitting Wales with a sucker punch from a set-piece. Eriksen sent a pinpoint pass for Thomas Delaney to unleash a fierce volley that flew inches wide of the post.
Bale had an opportunity to stretch his legs after Ramsey won the ball back in midfield, but he fired beyond the upright as well as Schmeichel after he sprinted past Denmark skipper Kjaer.
But Giggsâ men were undone by their oppositionâs main man Eriksen after 32 minutes. Lasse Schone sprayed a searching ball out to right-back Henrik Dalsgaard, who cut a square pass across the edge of the box for the Spurs star to hit a low shot across goal and into the back of the net.
Eriksenâs 14th goal in his last 18 internationals put the Danes in a commanding position, and it could have got even worse for Wales had it not been for the goalkeeping heroics of Wayne Hennessey.
The ball sat up perfectly for winger Pione Sisto to fire a rising drive towards goal, but the Palace stopper dived full stretch to paw it away and keep the deficit to a single goal at half-time.
A Bale free-kick took Kjaer off his feet after half-time, but Wales were no closer to testing Schmeichel.
The tiredness looked to be creeping when Mepham was dispossessed in his own box by Martin Braithwaite, who could only find the side netting with a shot.
But the pressure finally told as Denmark made the most of a dubious penalty decision to double their lead.
Ampadu jumped to block a Viktor Fischer cross, but was adjudged to have made a deliberate movement with his hand towards the ball despite being only three yards away.
The call may have been disputed, but there was no indecision from Eriksen, who fired the spot-kick past Hennessey to continue his remarkable run for the national team.
Braithwaite almost put the icing on the cake as hope fizzled out for Wales, but Hennessey once again proved the lifeline at the back as Denmark coasted to victory.
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