Football

The Irish Player Ratings From A Tense And Nervy 0-0 In Denmark

The Irish Player Ratings From A Tense And Nervy 0-0 In Denmark

That wasn't easy on the eye, and it was never going to be.

The "tough", gritty, tense encounter we were all expecting was what we saw as Ireland sat deep and Denmark tried to beat us at our own game, eventually resulting in a stale-mate.

The first 30 minutes were not encouraging from an Irish point of view as the Danes really should have taken a lead with two glorious chances falling to Andreas Cornelius and Pione Sisto, but Randolph was on form the sides went in at the break all level.

The second half wasn't much to write home about either in terms of technical football on display, and the fact that Darren Randolph was named man of the match speaks volumes, but 0-0 is absolutely an acceptable result with all to play for on Tuesday.

We'll go again on Tuesday, but here are how we rated the Irish players in Copenhagen tonight.

Darren Randolph - 9

An absolutely flawless performance from the Bray man. The double-save in the first half was excellent, his handling was assured all game, and he even rescued us from an absolute nightmare in a late Denmark goal. Super stuff.

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Cyrus Christie - 8

His best, and most complete, performance in an Ireland jersey, not only because he briefly morphed into Dani Alves for the run shortly before halftime, but he was targeted by Denmark's long balls in the first half and dealt with them all well. His attitude since stepping in for Seamus Coleman has been exemplary.

Shane Duffy - 7

The usual from the Brighton man; dominant in the air, rock solid at the back, and our biggest goal threat up the other end. Along with McClean now our most important player.

Ciaran Clark - 6

A slightly wobbly showing from Clark who wore the armband on the night. Nothing too concerning, but a few shaky clearances, one in particular that fell to Eriksen suggested nerves came into play a bit.

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Stephen Ward - 6

Solid as usual, Ward didn't get forward as much as he would have liked and has been doing in recent times, but he didn't put a foot wrong once again.

Harry Arter - 7

This was the Bournemouth man at his best, shielding the back four and being a right bastard for the likes of Christian Eriksen and Thomas Delaney in midfield. Should have cemented his starting place with that performance and will be needed again on Tuesday.

Jeff Hendrick - 4

Anonymous for the entire 90 minutes, we need to think about how we use Jeff Hendrick because he's clearly a talented player but when he plays in central midfield he is a passenger. Out wide is where he made the Wales goal happen and where his best performances have come for Ireland, but something has to change.

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Callum O'Dowda - 6

Did OK, but the decison to give him the start in such an important game remains a curious one in the aftermath of the result. A few nice runs, but looked uncomfortable while defending.

Robbie Brady - 5

The quality just wasn't there. Delivery wasn't up to it's usual high standards and the Burnley man was sloppy in possesion throughout. Not his night.

James McClean - 7

Was probably our best player in the first half as he gave no Danish player an inch and offered us a moment to smile as he played a superb garryowen to himself, but wasn't as involved in the second 45. Still, one of our better performers, almost by default at this stage.

Daryl Murphy - 5

The poor guy didn't stand a chance. Asked to do the job Shane Long does best despite halfing less than half of the mobility of the Southampton man. Murphy is a useful player when you play to his strengths, leaving him alone to pressure a four-man back line is not that.

Substitutes - 4

Left it too late before introducing Shane Long, and the Hourihane and Whelan introductions were to do nothing other than waste a bit of time. Injuries have really impacted our ability to get a lift from the bench.

SEE ALSO: Loads Of Irish Fans Are Not Shy About Sitting In The Home Section In Denmark

Mikey Traynor

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