Captain Mile Jedinak rode to Australia’s World Cup rescue with a penalty to cancel out Christian Eriksen’s superb opener for Denmark, securing a 1-1 draw on Thursday that ensured Group C would go down to the wire.
Eriksen’s seventh-minute opener was fully deserved by the fast-starting Danes and the quality of his half-volley finish was excellent in a tournament that has produced some wonderful goals.
Jedinak, however, got Australia back into the game with his second penalty in Russia, awarded following the intervention of the VAR, and the draw kept the Socceroos just about alive in the tournament.
Denmark moved on to four points and need at least a draw against France in their final game to guarantee a last-16 spot. Australia’s destiny, however, is no longer in their own hands.
With one point, they must win their last match against Peru to stand any chance of going through, but results could still conspire to send them home.
“For me it is important just that we have to beat Peru,” Australia coach Bert van Marwijk told reporters. “I have no influence on the rest so I do not think about it. I will not sleep one second less.”
After their opening defeat by France, Van Marwijk resisted the temptation to draft in attacking reinforcements, leaving veteran forward Tim Cahill on the bench for the second match in a row.
It looked a bad decision in the early stages as Australia laboured up front and the Danes tore into their opponents at a furious pace.
Aaron Mooy’s poor clearance was immediately returned into the area. Nicolai Jorgensen controlled and cleverly flicked the ball inside to Eriksen, who ghosted into space and lashed a sweet half-volley on the rise which flew high into the net.
It was Eriksen’s 13th goal in his last 15 appearances for his country and underlined the pivotal importance of the Tottenham Hotspur playmaker to the otherwise workmanlike Danes.
نستخدم ملفات الكوكيز لنسهل عليك استخدام مواقعنا الإلكترونية ونكيف المحتوى والإعلانات وفقا لمتطلباتك واحتياجاتك الخاصة، لتوفير ميزات وسائل التواصل الاجتماعية ولتحليل حركة المرور لدينا...اعرف أكثر