In the group stage, the Danes started with a loss to hosts France . Michel Platini decided the game in the 78th minute with the only goal of the game. Denmark was shocked in this opening game of the European Championship by the failure of Allan Simonsen , who broke his leg in the game.
In the second group game a 5-0 victory over Yugoslavia could be retracted. The goal scorers were Arnesen (2), Berggreen, Elkjaer Larsen and Lauridsen. The third group game was about promotion. Danish Dynamite had to play against Belgium in Strasbourg . The Belgians quickly took the lead 2-0. Arnesen made the connection in the 41st minute with a penalty. Brylle Larsen equalized in the 60th minute and Elkjaer Larsen made it 3-2 in the 84th minute. Thus, Denmark could qualify as second in the group for the knockout games.
In the semifinals, the Danes met the group winners of Group 2 Spain . Already in the 7th minute Denmark went 1-0 through a Lerby goal. Maceda equalized in the 62nd minute. The game went into extra time, but both teams could not score another goal, so it went to penalties. After five penalties from Spain and four on the Danish side, Elkjaer came on. He missed the penalty and Denmark was eliminated. The dream of the final had to be buried.