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Romelu Lukaku dedicated his opening goal at Euro 2020 to Christian Eriksen – and then admitted he fought back tears after his Inter Milan teammate collapsed on the pitch just hours earlier.
In dramatic scenes on Saturday, Eriksen dropped to the ground at the Parken Stadium soon before half-time in Denmark's match against Finland and was treated on the pitch before being taken to hospital.
The first-round match was suspended with players from both sides in clear distress before resuming some two hours later after Eriksen was said to be in a stable condition.
As Denmark resumed their clash, which saw Finland secure a 1-0 win, Belgium were also in action against Russia and Lukaku stole the show by grabbing a brace in the comfortable 3-0 victory.
Lukaku dedicated his first goal in Belgium's win over Russia to Eriksen by saying into the pitchside cameras: "Chris, I love you."
Speaking to Sporza after the match, the former Manchester United striker said: "I had a lot of tears before the game. It was difficult to focus.
"I am happy with the victory, but my thoughts are with Christian.”
In a post-match interview with beIn Sports, he added: "I enjoyed the game but for me, it was difficult to play because my mind was with my [Inter Milan] team-mate Christian Eriksen.
"I hope he is healthy and I dedicate this performance to him.
"I cried a lot because I was scared, obviously. You live strong moments together. I spent more time with him than with my family.
"My thoughts are with him, his girlfriend, his two kids and his family."
The brace from Lukaku helped the number one ranked team in the world make a winning start to the tournament in St Petersburg.
Substitute Thomas Meunier also struck in the first half to cap a good evening for the Red Devils, who were without the injured Kevin De Bruyne while captain Eden Hazard was only introduced for the final 18 minutes.
READ MORE:Denmark star Christian Eriksen collapses on pitch as medics perform CPR
READ MORE:Christian Eriksen 'saved by heroic Danish teammate' who performed CPR before medics
- Euro 2020
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