Denmark were holding on against Republic of Ireland, says Martin O’Neill

Denmark, who saw Simon Kjaer’s header cleared off the line in the second half, brought on Chelsea defender Andreas Christensen for the final 10 minutes as they looked to secure the point to take them to the top of Group B4.

And O’Neill, who admitted his side need to do more going forward, was satisfied with the result and performance.

He said: “When we get the ball and play it, we look absolutely fine. I thought the very fact Denmark made the substitution they did, with Christensen, a top-class defender, coming on for the centre-forward… perhaps maybe Denmark were hanging on for a point in the end.

“We allowed Denmark too much possession early on, they grew into the game whereas we were sitting back. We have to create a few more chances. That said, I don’t think Denmark created too many chances.

“The clean sheet was very important – rebuilding again, giving us that confidence again.”

Ireland were boosted by the return of Shane Long, who played 83 minutes against the Danes.

The Southampton striker had been a doubt for the game due to an ankle knock but O’Neill was impressed with the 31-year-old’s contribution.

“I thought he did very well,” O’Neill said. “I knew his fitness was going to be a problem, but he lasted much longer than I thought he would do.

“His contribution, considering the limited amount of time he has played at club level, he did very well.”

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