Gary Connaughton reporting from the Aviva Stadium
On a cold night in Dublin, the Republic of Ireland failed to do much to ignite a fire under the home support.
Stephen Kenny's side had most of the ball in their game against Norway, although they didn't look like a threat for vast stretches of the game. Ultimately, it was two lapses at the back from set-pieces that cost them, cancelling out Alan Browne's wonder strike to result in a 2-1 defeat.
Here's how we rated the performances on the night.
Ireland Player Ratings vs Norway
Gavin Bazunu - 6
Showed an exemplary range of passing early in the game, picking out some beautiful long balls to bypass the Norwegian press. However, this did seem to abandon him somewhat as the game went on. He nearly got caught out by a Norwegian set-piece delivery on the half hour mark and was a tad fortunate to see the ball rebound off his shoulder.
There was little he could do about the opening goal. Made an excellent stop early in the second half to keep Ireland in it, but once again was left high and dry for the second.
Nathan Collins - 6
Defended very well in a couple of one v one situations in the opening half, as well as producing one possibly goal-saving block. However, most of their good play did come down that right side.
Collins would have hoped to step into midfield more often, but he did show some good passing range on a couple of occasions. It was his botched clearance late on that allowed the Norwegians to grab the winner.
John Egan - 6
Egan was untested defensively for much of the opening half, although he played a big part in the Norwegian opener. He was the one that lost Ostigard from the corner and allowed him to have a free header in the box.
Had a decent opportunity to get Ireland back on level terms early in the second half but turned his effort wide.
Dara O'Shea - 6
O'Shea showed some snappy passing in the opening half, although options were often lacking midfield when attempting to play out.
It was a steady showing from the West Brom man, although
Matt Doherty - 5
Looked to exploit the space on the right flank often early on, although Norway seemed to quickly stamp out that threat.
Doherty was asked few questions defensively throughout the 90 minutes, although his attacking output was also severely limited. Would have hoped for much better.
Callum O'Dowda - 7
Making his first Ireland appearance in over two years, O'Dowda provided a spark for the team in the opening exchanges. He was more than willing to push forward down the left, but he often slowed the ball down too much after receiving it in advanced areas.
He played with more urgency in the second half with most of Ireland's good attacking play coming down that flank. Probably Ireland's biggest attacking threat in the time he was on the pitch.
Josh Cullen - 6
Cullen's set-piece delivery was very poor in the first half, while he also struggle to find pockets of space in the middle third.
The Burnley man is often the one tasked with getting the ball moving in the middle third, but he struggled to do so tonight.
Alan Browne - 7
Should have showed more for the ball in the first half, especially when it was being played out from the back.
Browne missed an absolute sitter at the start of the second half, hitting his effort straight at Nyland when in a 1v1 with the goalkeeper. However, he more than made up for that miss with a thundering strike into the bottom corner to get Ireland back into the game.
His performance levels picked up after the goal and all considered it was a decent display.
— Balls.ie (@ballsdotie) November 17, 2022
Jayson Molumby - 6
Molumby was typically full of energy from the first whistle, although his impact in possession was minimal.
A hard working performance, but one without a whole lot of substance.
Michael Obafemi - 5
Struggled to get involved in the opening exchanges, giving away the ball sloppily on a few occasions.
Obafemi looked a bit more lively after halftime, although he continued to struggle to get involved in general play. Not his night, being replaced in the 75th minute.
Callum Robinson - 7
Showed some impressive movement early on, although he rarely got the opportunity to do so near the opposition penalty area. Otherwise, he struggled to get involved in the first 45 minutes.
Robinson looked a bit more dangerous after the interval and was a thorn in the side for Norway. Unfortuinately, no clearcut chances fell his way.
Robbie Brady - 5
Didn't have much of an impact on the ball after being introduced.
Chiedozie Ogbene - 6
Looked lively after coming on but failed to get involved in dangerous areas.
Jeff Hendrick & Evan Ferguson - N/A
Not on long enough to rate.