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Gary Lineker admits he "thought we had lost" Christian Eriksen after the midfielder's terrifying collapse at Euro 2020 on Saturday.

Eriksen, 29, suffered a cardiac arrest and fell to floor towards the end of the first half of Denmark's group fixture with Finland.

The Inter Milan playmaker required CPR and defibrillation on the pitch and was subsequently taken to hospital, where he stabilised.

But there were several harrowing minutes when Eriksen lay on the pitch receiving treatment, with fans in the dark on his condition.

Once screens were put up to shield the former Tottenham star from view, Lineker feared the worst while leading the BBC's studio coverage of the match.

Lineker feared the worst for Eriksen after screens were put up to shield him from view
(Image: Wolfgang Rattay/POOL/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock)

"Our reaction was the same as anyone at home," Lineker told The Times . "Shock, and it felt quite traumatic.

"I honestly suspected at one point we had lost him because they were suddenly putting screens up. 'Oh my goodness'."

Eriksen has since sent his first message from hospital on Monday and posted another encouraging social media update on Tuesday.

This comes as a relief to the entire footballing world after such a horrendous incident, which reminded Lineker of Fabrice Muamba's awful collapse while playing for Bolton Wanderers against Tottenham in the FA Cup in 2012.

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The 60-year-old also recalled the tragic death of former Leicester City owner Vichai Srivaddhanaprabha in a helicopter crash which killed five people in 2018.

He added: "I was working the day that Fabrice Muamba had his collapse and the Leicester helicopter incident, but they weren’t during the show. These were unbelievably difficult circumstances."

Meanwhile, the BBC drew heavy criticism for continuing to broadcast distressing pictures in the immediate aftermath of Eriksen's collapse.

Lineker later apologised and explained the broadcast feed was supplied by UEFA.

Were you impressed by Gary Lineker's composure? Have your say in the comments.

"The Uefa broadcast feed cut into a couple of images that we never would have," said the Match of the Day presenter.

"While it’s happening, it’s easy to be critical. In an ideal world we wouldn’t have had a couple of those images for sure, which is why I came back with some apologetic words. But it was a very difficult half-hour."

To the surprise of many, Denmark vs Finland subsequently resumed with the latter emerging 1-0 victors.

"We were saying, 'There is no way they are going to play again tonight. The players are going to be traumatised'," said Lineker.

"Then the news came through that they were kicking off in a few minutes, so you have to prepare to get quickly back on air, think of the right words, get the tone right.

"It’s not really what we are there to talk about. That’s broadcasting — you can have something thrown at you that you really weren’t expecting.

"You just have to try to deal with circumstances. Just try to show your concern for the person involved in the incident, even if there is not much you can say beyond that.

"In 25 years of doing this job, that was the most difficult, distressing and emotional broadcast I’ve ever been involved with."