Denmark v Republic of Ireland, Nations League

Ireland and Denmark renew rivalry (Photo by Mike Hewitt/Getty Images)
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Michael Brennan looks forward to Rep of Ireland v Denmark, Mon 19 November, 7.45pm, sky sports main event


Denmark have kept nine clean sheets in 15 games since their World Cup play-off victory over Ireland and had yet to concede in the UEFA Nations League before a late Gareth Bale strike on Friday night.

They will come into the game in high spirits following their defeat of Wales, a result which keeps them unbeaten entering their final game against the Irish.

Ireland in contrast have conceded in six of their eight games during 2018, while registering just four goals in the process since Denmark ended their hopes of World Cup qualification last November.

It’s safe to say that the Irish fans have had very little to cheer about in 2018. During the year they have only witnessed their team be on the winning side once, against the USA in a friendly at the Aviva Stadium in June.

They have also only scored a solitary goal in their Nations League campaign so far after three games, this came in the 4-1 defeat to Wales in Cardiff.

The recent head to head record between the two sides show both teams scoring only once in their last five encounters. Ireland are ahead in this head to head battle winning twice, with two draws and a solitary Danish victory.

On the three occasions that have produced a winning side, the games have generated plenty of goals, 13 to be exact.

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The Match:

It is very difficult to find positives from an Irish perspective going into this game. As stated, they enter the game having won only once all year and have also registered only one victory away from home since the start of 2017.

In fact, the statistic is far more harrowing than meets the eye, since the start of 2017 Ireland have won just four of their 19 games, keeping a clean sheet on six occasions while conceding 22 times.

The pressure is continuing to mount on Martin O’Neill and Roy Keane during the International Break. Denmark’s defeat of Wales on Friday night has condemned Ireland to relegation to the third tier of the Nations League.

The corresponding fixture finished with a 0-0 draw at the Aviva, a repeat result may not be enough to appease the fans, while another defeat could signal the end of their time in charge.

Ireland’s lackluster display against Northern Ireland had a similar pattern to what we’ve seen over the last two years from the side. They have registered just eight shots on target in the Nations League so far in their opening three games, with only one goal to show for their efforts.

They will need a complete contrast in form if they are to get anything against a defensively well-organised Danish side.

It’s the second time the two teams will play each other since their World Cup play-off match. The previous fixture ended in a 0-0 draw, a Danish side that was missing Christian Eriksen, who had scored a hat-trick on his previous appearance for the Danes against Ireland. He has been directly involved in 20 goals for Denmark in his last 19 appearances (15 goals, 5 assists).

Team News:

Michael Obafemi could feature for the first time for Ireland. While John Egan, Alan Browne, and Sean Maguire miss out through injury.

James McLean misses out due to suspension.

Denmark will be without the suspended Kasper Schmeichel and his usual national team deputy Jonas Lossl. Frederik Ronnow is in line to make his seventh appearance between the sticks for the Danes.

Team captain Simon Kjaer is absent due to injury.


Denmark’s nine clean sheets in 15 games paired with Ireland’s one win away from home in almost two years, makes Denmark to win to nil an easy first selection.

The games between these two sides have rarely seen both teams scoring. Recent results show both teams scoring in only two of Denmark’s last 10 games, while just four of Irelands last 10 have seen both teams find the net, making  both teams scoring on Monday night unlikely.

Finally, with his goal scoring record highlighted above and a hat-trick in his previous game against the Irish, Eriksen to score anytime is my goalscorer selection.

Denmark Win To Nil –

Both Teams To Score (No) –

Christian Eriksen Anytime –

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*Odds were correct at time of publishing the article