Former Ireland international Damien Duff was markedly unimpressed with the team’s display against Denmark.
Martin O’Neill’s side kept their World Cup hopes alive with a 0-0 draw in Copenhagen, in a performance that was more about containing the Danish threat than taking the game to the hosts.
Analysing the match in his RTE punditry role after the match, Duff criticised Ireland for not taking the game to Denmark and gambling on getting a positive result at the Aviva on Tuesday – something that is is not convinced the Boys in Green can do if they play in the same manner as they did on Saturday:
— RTÉ Soccer (@RTEsoccer) November 11, 2017
“The disappointing thing is, we never really went toe to toe with them. We never took the game to them, and with our previous form at the Aviva, there’s no reason to think that we’re going to take the game to them there.
“Without the ball, yeah brilliant, we defend well, desire, spirit, but you expect that from Irish players. With the ball it wasn’t pretty – we must be able to play better than that. Harry Arter…O’Dowda, Brady, McClean. Being in that team you must feel demoralised at times.
“I know it’s a game plan. Trapattoni always got hammered for being a long-ball merchant, but we did it well. Denmark did it slightly better than us.
“Without the ball, brilliant, but with the ball, awful.”
Ireland didn’t manage to get the away goal but they will still have confidence n themselves to get the result they need to reach the World Cup for the first time since 2002.
In this week’s episode of the Mixer Irish football podcast, we review last week’s FAI Cup final with former Cork City defender Derek Coughlan and look ahead to Ireland’s massive World Cup play-off against Denmark.