Denmark and Australia played a 1-1 draw in Samara on Thursday that kept Denmark on course to qualify and left Australia far short of that.
Denmark opened the scoring seven minutes in when Nicolai Jorgensen received the ball in the box and made a beautiful finesse chip to a charging Christian Eriksen.
He made no mistake and drove it home.
Australia equalized in the 38th through a penalty. Mathew Leckie headed a shot in the box. Yussuf Poulsen of Denmark jumped, but his arm blocked the shot. A quick check of the video confirmed the penalty. Certainly some Australian partisans would have seen it as inadvertent and inconsequential.
Mile Jedinak converted the penalty for Australia, and the score was tied.
It remained so through the second half, although both sides had some decent chances. Australia wound up with 14 shots and Denmark 10 in the open contest.
With 4 points, Denmark is in good position to qualify along with France from Group C. Australia must beat Peru in its last game, and even that may not be enough, depending on other results.
90: Australia Comes Close
Arzani forces a save from Schmeichel and it bounces away. Leckie’s shot shortly after is also saved. Good from Australia.
82’: Missed Chance
Arzani’s cross seeks Juric, but he’s well covered by Denmark.
80’: Aussies Want a Win
Leckie goes for a header in the box, but it hits his shoulder and goes well wide. Having lost its opener, Australia will be much less happy with a draw.
76’: Australia’s Nabbout Injured
Nabbout of Australia is in a lot of pain after an arm injury. He’ll be replaced by Tomi Juric.
73’: More Pressure From the Aussies
Rogic’s effort is on net, but Schmeichel get down to save. Moments later, he gets off another blast that goes wide.
71’: Australia Miss!
Mooy of Australia blasts a shot from just outside the box but it goes over. He holds his head in dismay.
68’: Danger in the Denmark Box
Mooy chips it in, and Schmeichel can only get a hand to it. Leckie sends a scary cross zipping along the face of goal, and Dalsgaard only just arrives to clear it away.
67’: Strong Defense on Both Sides
Both teams are playing effective defense this half, particularly closing down moves when they get close to the box.
59’: Poulsen Out for Denmark
No more chances for Poulsen to atone for his hand ball. He is subbed out for Martin Braithwaite.
56’: A Cross to Nowhere
Australia gets a spell of possession that ends with Risdon launching a cross to nowhere.
51’: Chance for Denmark
Sisto pumps a shot wide for Denmark after a good series of passes. Poulsen made the last pass as he bids to atone for his handball.
47’: Second Half Kicks Off
A draw would be a solid result for Denmark, and would keep Australia alive. But of course a win would be far better for both teams.
The second goal opened up the game and both teams are pressing for a go-ahead goal.
43’: Near Miss!
A free kick sails dangerously into the box for Denmark, Poulsen pulls off a cheeky back heel and it comes to Sainsbury of Australia. He boots it toward goal! Luckily the possible own goal is saved.
41’: What Led to Australia’s Goal
Here’s what set up that penalty. Leckie got a header in the box. Poulsen jumped, but he blocked the effort with his hand.
39’: GOAL! It’s 1-1
Australia ties it up. Jedinak sends the penalty into the net!
38’: Hold That Thought!
It’s a penalty for Australia!
37’: The 1-0 World Cup
Soccer haters like to blast the 0-0 draw, but the 1-0 game is sometimes worse, especially when the goal comes early, and the team that scored sits back to absorb pressure. This has sort of become the 1-0 Cup.
31’: Australia Applying Pressure
Great footwork by Matthew Leckie of Australia leads to a cross to Robbie Kruse and a blocked shot.
24’: Missed Chances
After a turnover, Sisto of Denmark enterprisingly tries a quick shot at the edge of the box. Saved.
Then, Rogic tries a shot from outside the box for Australia, but it’s well wide.
17’: Aussies in Trouble
A loss doesn’t mathematically eliminate Australia but it very nearly does. The Socceroos need to fight back. At the moment though Denmark continues to control the action.
10’ Another 1-0 Match? It’s Early
After three 1-0 games yesterday, and 10 so far in the tournament, this game too is 1-0. But there are 80 more minutes for more goals.
7’: GOAL! Denmark Up, 1-0
Denmark goes ahead! Nicolai Jorgensen got the ball in the box and made a beautiful finesse chip to a charging Christian Eriksen. He made no mistake and drove it home.
6’: Corner to Australia
Matthew Leckie headed it far too high.
3’: Quick Free Kick for Denmark
It curls in, but is headed away. That leads to a corner, which leads to Thomas Delaney sending a header well wide.
Denmark in white, Australia in dark green. Who says the United States didn’t make the World Cup? An American, Mark Geiger, is the video referee today.
Where They Stand
France and Denmark sit at the top of the group with 3 points, meaning Australia (0 points) is in serious need of a win to get back in the hunt. But bookmakers have them as 3-1 underdogs to do so.
Denmark’s Starting Lineup
9 N Jorgensen
17 Stryger Larsen
Australia’s Starting Lineup
Australia vs. Denmark Top Story Lines
• Denmark beat Peru in its opener, 1-0, but if Peru had converted a penalty, it could have been a different story.
• Not everyone was impressed with Denmark’s star, Christian Eriksen of Spurs, but he did provide the assist for Yussuf Poulsen’s goal.
• There were plaudits, however, for keeper Kasper Schmeichel, son of the great Danish keeper Peter Schmeichel. With six saves, he ranks third in the Cup.
• Australia was somewhat unlucky to lose to France. Both French goals were aided by video review, and the game winner, in the 81st minute, only barely crossed the line.
• Australia’s lone goal in the 2-1 loss came on a penalty converted by Mile Jedinak, the captain.
• Australia’s statistical profile of the game is less than impressive. It ended up with only four shots, with only one of them on net. It also had only one corner.
• This is the second game to be played in Samara, where Serbia beat Costa Rica earlier this week, 1-0.