Denmark’s Thomas Delaney likens Ireland to a tin of beans

Breaking down O’Neill’s side like ‘opening a can of baked beans with your bare hands’

Thomas Delaney is tackled by Callum O’Dowda during Denmark’s draw with Ireland. Photograph: Lars Moeller/EPA

Thomas Delaney is tackled by Callum O’Dowda during Denmark’s draw with Ireland. Photograph: Lars Moeller/EPA

 

It was far from pretty, but Ireland’s goalless draw away to Denmark on Saturday night leaves them in a straightforward position.

Beat the Danes in Dublin on Tuesday night, and they will qualify for the World Cup.

The Copenhagen stalemate was another example of the best, and worst, of Martin O’Neill’s side.

Ireland kept their shape well throughout, frustrating the hosts for large periods of the game with their high workrate and defensive organisation.

But every time a Danish attack broke on the rocks of Shane Duffy and co Ireland were far too easy to cough up possession, and failed to create a single chance of their own during the second half.

Yet despite dominating the ball, Denmark were unable to find a way through - and afterwards midfielder Thomas Delaney compared trying to break Ireland down to “opening a can of baked beans with your bare hands.”

Speaking to the Danish sports magazine Tipsbladet, he said: “We can live with the result today.

“We can draw 1-1 against Ireland, and then we are on. So that’s OK, but it was a hard fight - as expected and feared. We tried and tried, but it was a bit like opening a can of baked beans with your bare hands - it takes time.

“I would like to see that we had put one in the first half. We have chances, but it’s not an easy team to meet and I expect and hope they try a little more in Dublin, and then we can get a little more space.”

With the away goals rule in place, a score draw would be enough for Denmark to book their place in Russia next summer - while another stalemate is the only result which could see the tie go to penalties.

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