Jose Mourinho was in tears after watching his former player Christian Eriksen collapse during Denmark’s Euro 2020 bow against Finland on Saturday in Copenhagen.
The broadcast displayed incredibly distressing scenes as the midfielder required life-saving CPR before being carried off the pitch on a stretcher and taken to hospital.
Eriksen was stabilised at hospital and the 29-year-old was even able to call his teammates to assure them of his condition, allowing for the game to be restarted.
Mourinho, who coached Eriksen at Spurs for two months before the Dane moved to Inter Milan, admitted he could not stop thinking about the incident – but insisted the day was worth celebrating.
“Today I cannot stop thinking about what happened yesterday,” Mourinho revealed on Talksport. “I think it’s a day to celebrate, not to be sad.”
“Hopefully football went in a direction where the organisation, the protocols, the level of the doctors and the specialists, and I also believe God was looking at football in that moment.
“Everything together made Christian to be with us, to be with his family, to be alive.
“It was much more important than football but at the same time, I believe that it also showed the good values of football. The love, the solidarity, family spirit. It was not just about his family it was about the football family. Football bringing people together.
“I prayed yesterday, I cried yesterday, but how many millions did it around the world? I believe many because football can bring people together. Yesterday, for the wrong reasons football brought people together, at the end we can celebrate Christian is alive.”
The new Roma manager also revealed that he spoke to Eriken’s international teammate Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg, who Mourinho signed for Tottenham, and the defensive midfielder’s news was encouraging.
“I didn’t speak with [Eriksen] but I spoke with Pierre-Emile Hojbjerg this morning and Pierre is very positive about Christian. The news is good, so I think it’s a moment to celebrate.”
Speaking at a press conference on Sunday, Denmark manager Kasper Hjulmand said their match versus Finland should not have restarted after the incident.
“We should not have played. Players have different kinds of shocks and traumas and emotions, but we will try and use tomorrow and the next few days to do things as normal as possible.
“I will try and get a feeling of the players. Maybe for some players the time will be too short to get a meaning into playing football again. Some will try to use it as a force to try and get ever closer together.
“We will do our best in the next match and I have a sense that we will really be able to get together and do our best, so try to reach during the training session as much normality as possible and do our best against Belgium.”
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