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Denmark vs Ireland

Denmark vs Ireland European qualifier Russia 2018: match report, goals, action

Ireland and Denmark could not be separated on Saturday night in Copenhagen as they take the show back to Dublin for the second leg.

COPENHAGEN, DENMARK - NOVEMBER 11:  Darren Randolph of the Republic of Ireland makes a save during the FIFA 2018 World Cup Qualifier Play-Off: First Leg between Denmark and Republic of Ireland at Telia Parken on November 11, 2017 in Copenhagen, .  (Photo
Catherine IvillGetty Images

Denmark 0-0 Republic of Ireland: match report

The Republic of Ireland and Denmark played out a drab 0-0 draw in the first leg of their World Cup play-off in Copenhagen on Saturday.

The closest either side came to a goal was when Pione Sisto fired wide in the first half for the hosts, while Yussuf Poulsen saw a 90th-minute header saved by Darren Randolph.

Both sides will be satisfied with the result, as Martin O'Neill's Irish now know victory in Dublin on Tuesday would secure a first World Cup appearance since 2002, but an away goal for the Danes could prove decisive after this clean sheet.

Denmark vs Ireland live stream online: as it happened

Denmark vs Ireland live stream online: the slight favourites over Ireland

In principle Denmark are the slight favourites, despite not being so in the draw. Their football has improved markedly recently, led by Eriksen, who is showing his true capabilities for Tottenham Hotspur. Most of Denmark's attacking play flows through him, and he's well accompanied by players who are also in the big leagues: Sisto, Bendtner and Poulsen. In defence, there's another LaLiga player: Sevilla man Kjaer.

Denmark vs Ireland live stream online: coach playing it cautious, or maybe even boring

However their coach Age Hareide avoids the tag favourite. "So long as they don't score, that's fine. 0-0 would be good and then we'd have 120 minutes to get a goal in Dublin. But we don't speculate, we want to win". If they do it'll be something of a novelty. Since 1985, the Danes have lost the four games they've played against Ireland, the last, in 2007, by 0-4.

Denmark vs Ireland live stream online: big on hopes and dreams

Meanwhile Ireland travel to the Telia Parken with no truly big names since the retiral of Robbie Keane, but they are big on hopes and dreams. O'Neill is well aware of the difficulty the Danes will pose, with their supposedly more illustrious players, but he's confident in Ireland's direct, solid football and will be hoping to cause Denmark trouble at home. Ireland will be without Everton midfielder McCarthy, who is injured, but should have Hendrick and Ward.

Fun fact. The game will be a re-encounter for the two coaches, with Hareide and O'Neill having played together 30 years ago at Norwich. Two old friends, face to face, dreaming of Russia.