Denmark move top of Group C despite Australia draw

Denmark move top of Group C despite Australia draw
Trent Sainsbury of Australia (R) and Nicolai Jorgensen of Denmark in action during the FIFA World Cup 2018 group C preliminary round soccer match between Denmark and Australia in Samara, Russia, 21 June 2018.

by Austin Ditlhobolo

Thursday Jun 21, 2018. 16:01

Australia held Denmark to a 1-1 stalemate in their second 2018 FIFA World Cup Group C match at the Cosmos Stadium in Russia on Thursday.

The draw sees the Socceroos remain third on the Group C standings, while the Danish Dynamite move to the top of the table.

The match got off to a lively start and it was Australia should have broken the deadlock six minutes into the encounter.

Aaron Mooy's corner-kick found Mathew Leckie, who got up high unmarked, but he headed the ball over the crossbar from close range.

Denmark's star player Christian Eriksen did not make any mistake a minute later at the other end as he broke the deadlock.

Nicolai Jorgensen set up Eriksen, who fired past Australia goalkeeper Mathew Ryan with a good finish to make it 1-0 to Denmark.

It should have been 2-0 to Denmark in the 25th minute following a good move by the Danish Dynamite.

Henrik Dalsgaard found his team-mate Jorgensen inside the Australia box, but the latter slammed his header wide of goal.

The Socceroos then grew in confidence and they had a good chance to level matters on half-hour.

Robbie Kruse controlled the ball inside the Denmark box, before unleashing a shot which was blocked by Andreas Christensen.

The Socceroos were then awarded a penalty after Yussuf Poulsen was adjudged to have handled the ball inside the Danish Dynamite box eight minutes before the half-time break.

Mile Jedinak then stepped up and converted from the spot-kick to make it 1-1 for Australia with the Socceroos netting his second goal of the tournament.

The score was 1-1 at the interval following a lively first-half between Denmark and Australia.

The first chance of the second-half fell for Pione Sisto in the 51st minute and the Denmark forward placed his effort wide of the target.

Poulsen, who was booked after handling the ball in the box, was pulled out by Denmark coach Age Hairede just before the hour-mark and he introdced Martin Braithwaite.

Australia kept pushing for their second goal and Tom Rogic tried his luck from range, and his effort was brilliantly saved by Denmark keeper Peter Schmeichel in the 73rd minute.

It was end-to-end stuff in the closing stages of the game as both teams launched attacks in search of the winning goal.

Sisto, who was looking lively for the Danish Dynamite, pulled the trigger from range in the 74th minute and his attempt narrowly missed the target.

The last chance of the game fell for Leckie in the 89th minute and his effort was well-saved by Schmeichel, and ultimately Denmark, and Australia drew 1-1 on the day.

Denmark (1) 1 (Eriksen 7')
Australia (1) 1 (Jedinak 38')

Denmark: Schmeichel, Dalsgaard, Kjaer, Christensen, Larsen, Schöne, Delaney, Poulsen (Braithwaite 59), Eriksen, Sisto, Jorgensen (Cornelius 68').

Australia: Ryan, Risdon, Sainsbury, Milligan, Behich; Jedinak, Rogic (Irvine 82'), Mooy, Leckie, Nabbou (Juric 75'), Kruse (Arzani 68').

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