AL RAYYAN, Qatar (AP) — Christian Eriksen was back playing a major tournament less than a year and a half after his cardiac arrest at the European Championship.

Eriksen started in his customary playmaker position for Denmark’s opening game at the World Cup on Tuesday against Tunisia in Group D and played the full 90 minutes of a 0-0 draw.

Eriksen nearly won it for Denmark when he produced a dangerous long-distance shot on goal in the second half that Tunisia goalkeeper Aymen Dahmen had to bat away.

After Eriksen collapsed during Denmark’s opening Euro 2020 group game against Finland in June of last year, medics used a defibrillator to restart his heart as a horrified nation — and much of the soccer world — watched on as he lay lifeless on the field at Parken Stadium in Copenhagen.

Eriksen’s appearance at the World Cup is the latest step of a remarkable comeback that has already seen him return to elite soccer in the Premier League, first with London club Brentford and then Manchester United — showing he is still among the world’s best playmakers.

He made his national team comeback in March, scoring two minutes after coming on as a substitute in a 4-2 loss to the Netherlands. He also netted with a 25-yard shot against Croatia in the Nations League in September.


AP World Cup coverage: and