Denmark manager thanks Republic of Ireland 'very much' for giving Christian Eriksen so much space

The Tottenham Hotspur was devastating, as his side came from behind to humiliate Ireland after Shane Duffy’s fifth-minute header

Miguel Delaney
Aviva Stadium
Wednesday 15 November 2017 00:29
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Aage Hareide was delighted with the performance of his playmaker
Aage Hareide was delighted with the performance of his playmaker

Denmark boss Aage Hareide remarkably thanked Ireland “very much” for playing a formation that gave Christian Eriksen the freedom to score a hat-trick in his side’s brilliant 5-1 win to qualify for the World Cup.

The Tottenham Hotspur was devastating, as his side came from behind to humiliate Ireland after Shane Duffy’s fifth-minute header. Once Denmark got back in the game through a Cyrus Christie own goal, Eriksen began to purr, but Hareide said he was surprised by how Ireland set up to allow that.

O’Neill played a diamond midfield that gave the Spurs playmaker more space, before eventually taking off his entire defensive midfield.

“I was surprised, they gave a lot of space in centre of midfield for Eriksen,” Hareide said.

“Thank you very much for giving him space. Today he was fantastic. Always fantastic player on the ball, works hard for the team, inspiration for all the lads around him. That’s the difference between the sides.

"It was very good. We came from behind, didn’t get stressed. Tried to play, got the openings, got the goals. We’re more effective than in first leg. Very pleased for the team. This is a difficult place to play football. They are compact and good defence, five goals against Ireland doesn’t happen much.

Asked what qualifying for the World Cup represents, Hareide said: “It means a lot. We played a lot of matches, haven’t lost since 2016 against Montenegro. Everything turned around when we played Germany, drew 1-1. Lads have stuck together, gave a fantastic performance in a difficult game.”

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