Ajax’s other bright young hope, Christian Eriksen, is only 18. Born on 14th February, 1992, in Middelfart, a town in central Denmark whose name means “central passage”, Eriksen is gunning for the top of the game. Just 424 minutes played for Ajax were enough to secure a first Denmark call-up and Eriksen, uncapped by the Under-21s, made his senior debut on 3rd March 2010, coming on as a substitute in a friendly against Austria. It had been less than two months after his first Eredivisie appearance with Ajax. “I was surprised and a little scared when I heard the voice of the Denmark coach Morten Olsen on the phone” said Eriksen. All at Ajax knew the young Dane had talent, but what really surprised was his instant mental toughness, both on and off the pitch. For Eriksen there seems to be little difference in playing against ADO Den Haag or Juventus. He blends superb technical skills with great vision and a hard working attitude. His cold-blooded composure has even drawn comparisons with the young Dennis Bergkamp.
Eriksen started his career in 2005 when he turned out for the youth team of Odense Boldklub and just three years later was given the Danish Under-17 Talent of the Year award. John Steen Olsen, Ajax’s Scandinavian scout, phoned Danny Blind, at that time technical director of the Dutch giants. “At Odense there’s a 16-year-old midfielder you can’t miss” said Olsen, “please come quickly.”
The young midfielder had already had trials with Barcelona and Chelsea and did not want to go abroad to play for a deal again. “Give me a contract or leave me here” said Eriksen to Blind, and on 17th October 2008 a deal to take the young Dane to Holland was announced. “OB (Odense) gained €500,000, Ajax signed a talented player, and Christian found the right club to develop his skills” said Odense scout Uffe Pedersen at the time.
Erikson has continued his progress at Ajax, picking up the best player award in the Varsseveld Ten Brinke Bouw Tournament in June 2009: An international competition for Under-17 club teams. The jury singled out the youngster for praise due a rare tactical insight into the game and fantastic ability to shoot with both feet. In Holland, in the Eredivisie Youth Championship, Eriksen scored 10 goals with Ajax A1 in the first half of the current season. When in January Ajax picked up the Uruguayan starlet Nicolas Lodeiro from Nacional Montevideo, who plays the same role as Eriksen, it was instead the Dane that broke through first into the Dutch club’s starting line-up.
“Eriksen doesn’t seem like a typical Danish player because he doesn’t drink beer and he doesn’t like to play pool” said Michael Laudrup in the Amsterdam ArenA press room after Ajax recently met Juventus. “Joking apart, I won’t be surprised to see him next June wearing the Denmark shirt during the 2010 World Cup. His play is pure class.”
Fonte: Inside Futbol