Matches | Review

Schmeichel blames the pitch for Denmark’s draw

Denmark were held to a 0-0 draw by the Republic of Ireland last night in Copenhagen, and the Danish goalkeeper blasted the playing surface.

The last of the first legs of the World Cup Qualifications playoffs was played last night at Parken Stadium in Copenhagen, where Denmark couldn’t find a way to score against Martin O’Neill’s side.  The draw has left everything to play for in Tuesday’s return leg, where both teams will be hoping to secure their spot at next year’s World Cup in Russia.

Speaking to Sky Sports after the match, Kasper Schmeichel revealed the disappointment of his side but at the same time, he also blamed the playing surface for their problems. “For us, we needed to be more clinical. We didn’t quite get our game going today. It was a horrendous pitch, it was very disappointing from our point of view. I hear that the Irish pitch is a little bit better so play to go a little bit smoother.”

When going into details about the pitch’s condition, Schmeichel added: “There was no grass on it. No grass, it was soft.

It took me back to my old days in Bury and League Two with those kind of pitches. It was the same for both teams, but it was disappointing for such a big game.

We were trying to play some fast football but we had to take an extra touch each time to secure the ball. It made a little bit of difference, but it’s no excuse. It was the same for them.”

Speaking about his opponents, Schmeichel had word of praise for his opposing number one. Darren Randolph put in a man-of-the-match performance and Schmeichel said: “Randolph made some great saves so we’re a little disappointed not to have won, but it’s not the end of the world. 

They were very disciplined and had the clear aim of stopping us scoring. When you see the opposition keeper being the man of the match, it tells you the story.

It was a great performance from him. He’s made a great double save and that could have opened it up. All credit to him. I hope he doesn’t do that again!”