Mainoo on Denmark, Ten Hag and Bellingham

England midfielder Kobbie Mainoo says the "great journey" Denmark and Manchester United team-mate Christian Eriksen has been on is “amazing” as the two nations prepare to meet in the Euros on Thursday.

Eriksen collapsed on the pitch and suffered a cardiac arrest at the last Euros in 2021 and has since had an Implantable Cardioverter Defibrillator (ICD) fitted, which has allowed him to continue his career.

The 32-year-old midfielder scored the opening goal in Denmark's first game of Euro 2024 against Slovenia - exactly 1100 days after he collapsed in the game against Finland.

"I have learned a lot from him, watching him when last season when I wasn't playing as much, trying to learn and pick up from his game as well," said Mainoo.

"The great journey he has been on since the last Euros is amazing. To be around him so close, he's such a great player.

"If I'm to play on Thursday I'll have to put that to the side to compete against him and hopefully get the win."

Another of Mainoo's United team-mates, Rasmus Hojlund is also in the Denmark side but the 19-year-old midfielder says the two have not spoken about the match.

"I've not spoke to him recently, but I'll probably leave that for after the game," he added. "I'm focused on what's going on here and maybe after the game I'll speak to him.

"I haven't played against him before. He's a really good friend, it's good to have them relationships on the pitch and you build them off the pitch and around the training ground."

Kobbie Mainoo and Jude Bellingham
Kobbie Mainoo replaced Jude Bellingham during England's opening Euro 2024 win over Serbia [Getty Images]

United manager Erik ten Haag will be staying at the club despite speculation around his future and Mainoo said he owes a lot to the Dutchman who gave him his Premier League debut and coached him through a breakthrough season which culminated in making the England squad.

"Happy to be building with him, got two trophies, hopefully there's more to come," said the teenager.

"It's nice to have that peace of mind to know what manager we have when we go back in pre-season. I'm so grateful for him that he put so much trust and belief in me to play in the team.

"I can't thank him enough."

Mainoo is competing for a place in England's midfield to play with likely starters, Arsenal's £105m signing Declan Rice and Jude Bellingham.

Real Madrid's Bellingham is among the candidates to win the Ballon d'Or for his starring role in his club's La Liga and Champions League-winning side.

Asked if Bellingham could be crowned as the world's best player this year, Mainoo said: "Yeah definitely. I mean everyone knows how great of a player he is. We see it everyday in training.

"He's such a nice guy as well. He's demanding, he has high standards that he sets and to play with him is great.

"Dec [Rice] is also such a good player, so reliable and so good on the ball and dominant in the midfield, so when I did get to play with him it's always a joy to have someone so strong on the ball next to you. You can always trust him no matter where you are on the pitch.

"Everyone knows he's worth every penny, he's such a good player. He's proved that in the Premier League and also on the international level.

"[Playing alongside Rice], it frees me up a lot and allows me to go forward and attack and I always know that when I go I can trust that he's there. It's a dream."

Uefa are investigating a claim of racism towards England's black players during their opening win over Serbia, but Mainoo said he did not have any views on the alleged incident.

He added: "I only heard about it on the way over, but as it is an ongoing investigation I will leave it to Uefa to decide whatever is going on with it."