I was just browsing the news and saw that the Danish national team for the next friendly and Nations League matches against Slovakia and Wales will be a group of amateur players from the lowest leagues because the Danish football federation, DBU, and the players of the Danish national team have a dispute on commercial rights. So basically the Danish team, among the 16 best in the world in the last World Cup, are not just a joke, but also insulting the fans, their opponents and the entire footballing world.
One has to wonder why this is not happening with other national teams: surely other national teams, whose professional players also have commercial rights, have similar agreements that could be an example for these uncompromising Danes...? So either the Danish national team players had the best deal in the world, and DBU were trying to normalize it, or DBU are offering a deal that is much worse than what other national teams have.
Last year the Danish women's team refused to play a World Cup qualifier
amid a similar dispute. Denmark was fined and lost the match. Why does this happen with DBU and not with other football associations? Are Danish professional players (both men and women) more complicated than the ones from other countries, or is DBU just incapable of striking an acceptable agreement that other federations in UEFA seem to have no problem with...?
I must admit that I give the benefit of the doubt to the players: DBU has historically been dismal at managing Danish football. Until 1975 DBU refused to recognize professionalism, and players who went professional were banned for life from the national team. This meant that Denmark, who had players in the top leagues in Europe throughout the 1950s and 1960s, always fielded teams of second rate amateurs, just like they are doing now!
So maybe this is just a return to the time when Danish football was dominated by glorious amateurs and would get their butts kicked by every other country. If anything, the next matches will be worth watching because Denmark will not be much better than San Marino or Liechtenstein.
Football is a joke.