Christian Eriksen is one of the world’s best playmakers, says Ivan Rakitic

Christian Eriksen is one of the world’s best playmakers, says Ivan Rakitic

Croatia‘s Ivan Rakitic has hailed Christian Eriksen as “one of the best playmakers in the world” ahead of their last-16 tie with Denmark on Sunday evening.

Eriksen registered a goal and an assist in Denmark’s World Cup group stage campaign and is their standout talent.

Speaking to FourFourTwoRakitic said of the 26-year-old Tottenham star: “Christian Eriksen is one of the best playmakers in Europe and the world.

“They [Denmark] are very compact, they know how to stop their opponents. They allow few chances to score for the opposing team and they can be very dangerous on the attack.”

Eriksen was involved in 56% of Denmark’s goals during qualifying, scoring 11 and providing three assists, and is the only Danish player to have had more than one shot on target so far at the 2018 World Cup (four).

In what is sure to be a battle of midfield playmakers, Croatia will be looking to Rakitic and Real Madrid’s Luka Modric to outshine their Danish counterparts.

But Eriksen’s Denmark teammate Thomas Delaney is backing the Spurs man, who has now scored 13 goals and delivered five assists in his last 16 games for Denmark, to inspire his side to an unlikely win despite being restricted in the tournament so far.

Speaking to FIFA TV (via FourFourTwo), he said: “In order for Christian to shine, he needs us to play in a certain way.

“Against France, we had already decided that we would play more calculating football, which didn’t allow him so much time and space to show his qualities.

“We haven’t been satisfied with our expression on the pitch for the first two matches and Christian has perhaps suffered a bit under that.”

The two sides clash on Sunday evening at 7pm with Croatia the favourites to advance to the quarter-finals, where they would face Spain or Russia.