Rasmus Hojlund came off the bench at half-time to help Denmark to an international win over Finland.

Denmark had to really dig in against Finland to record an important 1-0 away victory to move top of the group.

Last time the two teams met, Denmark won the game 3-1, with Rasmus Hojlund announcing himself on the international stage with a hat-trick.

This time he was on the bench, with the Danish national coach having reservations over whether he would be fit enough to complete 90 minutes at high intensity.

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Hojlund on at half-time

Finland set up with a defensive approach, happy to contain Denmark and play for a draw. It would have meant they stayed above them in the group.

They lined up with a five-man defence, which frustrated Denmark for most of the game. Hojlund came on at half-time, and while he was contained well and denied an attempt at goal, he gave the Danes a more physical presence and commanded attention from the defence.

Jonas Wind had been selected as the only striker, and with Denmark making little progress, manager Kasper Hjulmand took off midfielder Jesper Lindstrom and brought on Hojlund to join the attack.

Speaking to Tipsbladet, Hjulmand says he was happy with the way the changes worked.

He said: “There were many opportunities to do better in the first half. We had a lot of opportunities to create chances, but we didn’t have enough quality in the last pass. We changed our positions a little in the second half, and that made us more dangerous.

“We pushed to the end, and we had a plan for just this scenario. We wanted to go for the win in the end and we did. It is extremely difficult to play against such a compact and hard-fighting defence.”

Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg scored the winning goal in the 86th minute to take Denmark top of the group.

Hojlund has a week to rest

Denmark have managed Rasmus Hojlund’s minutes quite effectively over the international break.

He played 32 minutes against San Marino and 45 against Finland, a combined 77 minutes of action out of a possible 180.

He now has a week to rest ahead of what could be his first ever Manchester United start, when the Red Devils host Brighton in the Premier League.

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