Morten Olsen has apologised after likening Denmark’s 4-0 World Cup qualifying defeat against Armenia to 9/11.
The Denmark coach is readying his side for the return fixture, after losing heavily at Copenhagen on June 11, and made the comment to reporters in the pre-match press conference.
He said: “For us Danes I think that if you are in or around the team, this game in June is a blemish that needs to be washed away. Perhaps it’s a bit rough to compare, but in terms of football, it was our September 11.”
Olsen’s comments come almost 12 years to the day since nearly 3,000 people lost their lives in a terrorist attack in New York.
However, in an attempt to reverse any offence, an apology was quickly issued from the Danish Football Association’s official Twitter account from Olsen, which read: “I’m sorry if my comparison -- despite my reservations -- inadvertently offended some people.”
Morten Olsen om 11/9-kommentar: Jeg er ked af, hvis sammenligningen - trods mine forbehold - utilsigtet har såret nogle mennesker— Dansk Boldspil-Union (@DBUfodbold) September 9, 2013
Denmark are fifth, one off bottom, in Group B after seven games, but are just one point behind Bulgaria in second place leaving faint hope of qualifying for the 2014 World Cup in Brazil via the play-offs.
Even if the Danes win all three of their remaining fixtures against Armenia, Italy and Malta, they are not guaranteed a play-off spot. A loss on tuesday in Yerevan would virtually end their chances.