UEFA Nations League: Denmark may field futsal players over brand dispute with football stars

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Denmark Football Association (DBU), the governing body for football in the country, may be compelled to field futsal players in the national team over leading football stars commercial conflict with a national team sponsor brand.

Denmark is scheduled to play Wales in the UEFA Nations League opener on Sunday.

Some of the top football players in Denmark have commercial deals with the brands who compete with the national football team sponsors. While on national duty, the players will have to support the national team sponsors’ brands. This will lead to a commercial interest conflict between players and their sponsors.

The DBU and Denmark Football Players Association were engaged in contract talks for a long time. The football governing body has however declined to players’ body’s proposal to extend the existing deal. The prevailing scenario is raising the threat of senior internationals, many of whom were the part of the team that reached the last-16 stage of the World Cup, will not feature in the two upcoming games.

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Manager Age Hareide and assistant Jon Dahl Tomasson have reportedly d been temporarily stood down from their positions, with former Arsenal midfielder John Jensen in charge for the next two matches.

The DBU is now set to name a second-string XI for the two games with futsal players potentially being drafted in as Denmark’s top two domestic leagues did not make players available for selection. Failure to name a side could have seen Denmark being barred by UEFA.

Earlier, a contract dispute with the Danish national women’s team had led to the boycotting of a World Cup qualifier against Sweden last year, leaving the DBU with a US$23,100 fine and a final warning from UEFA over the cancellation of matches – forcing the association’s hand.

The players are reportedly also protesting over travelling conditions.