Martin O’Neill has hit back at criticism from Denmark midfielder, Thomas Delaney, who has branded Ireland’s style of football as ‘primitive’.
The Republic drew 0-0 with Denmark in a forgettable and stale match on a rainy night at the Aviva on Saturday and Delaney was critical of Ireland’s system and style of football, labelling it ‘primitive’. Speaking at Monday’s press conference, O’Neill hit back at the Borussia Dortmund midfielder.
“It’s not that long ago Denmark were considered a primitive side with an exceptional player. They’re dangerous with the players they have, but it’s not that long ago they were considered primitive by a lot of teams in Europe.
“They can play primitively, hence the centre-forward who is 6 foot 7.
“Eriksen world class, Delaney top player, Sisto plays in the big league too, but they can dish it out themselves when it’s necessary. They are as physical as other teams in Europe.”
Since beating Wales 1-0 back in October 2017, Ireland have scored just five goals in eight games, conceding fourteen. Martin O’Neill will be hoping for a much-improved performance on Tuesday, as Ireland do battle with a Wales side missing Gareth Bale, Aaron Ramsey, and Ethan Ampadu.
Ireland host Wales on Tuesday night, with a 19:45 K.O. at the Aviva Stadium.
The Republic of Ireland squad in full is as follows:
Goalkeepers: Darren Randolph (Middlesbrough), Colin Doyle (Hearts), Sean McDermott (Kristiansund BK)
Defenders: Cyrus Christie (Fulham), Matt Doherty (Wolverhampton Wanderers), Shane Duffy (Brighton & Hove Albion), Richard Keogh (Derby County), Ciaran Clark (Newcastle United), Kevin Long (Burnley), John Egan, Enda Stevens (Sheffield United), Darragh Lenihan, Derrick Williams (Blackburn Rovers)
Midfielders: Jeff Hendrick (Burnley), Conor Hourihane (Aston Villa), Alan Browne (Preston North End), Shaun Williams (Millwall), David Meyler (Reading), Harry Arter (Cardiff City*), Callum O’Dowda (Bristol City) – injured, James McClean (Stoke City)
Forwards: Shane Long (Southampton), Callum Robinson, Sean Maguire (Preston North End), Aiden O’Brien (Millwall), Scott Hogan (Aston Villa), Ronan Curtis (Portsmouth)