Republic of Ireland v Denmark preview: Christian Eriksen set to miss out
Watch UEFA Nations League clash live on Sky Sports Football from 7pm on Saturday
Last Updated: 13/10/18 11:05pm
Republic of Ireland will be hoping to take advantage of the expected absence of Christian Eriksen when they face Denmark in the UEFA Nations League on Saturday, live on Sky Sports.
Tottenham midfielder Eriksen has scored 15 times in his last 17 competitive matches, including a hat-trick in Denmark's 5-1 World Cup play-off win over Ireland last year.
However, he looks set to miss the match at the Aviva Stadium due to a stomach injury.
Asked about Eriksen's potential absence, Ireland defender Shane Duffy said: "He is obviously a top player, and it benefits us that he isn't in the team, but I'm sure they have players that will come in and step up, like we do.
"They are a good nation, a good team, and we know about all of their qualities. I'm sure they have something planned if he doesn't play, and we will have to try and stop that."
Ireland were beaten 4-1 by Wales in their opening Group B4 match while Denmark were 2-0 winners against Wales, with Eriksen scoring both goals.
O'Neill's side have conceded nine goals in the last two competitive games but have been boosted by the return of Harry Arter.
The Cardiff midfielder withdrew from Ireland's last matches after a row with assistant coach Roy Keane.
However, the pair have held talks and Ireland manager Martin O'Neill does not think there will be any lasting issues.
"I probably believe that it should make Harry stronger for it all," he said. "If there's criticism coming your way, take it in some sort of spirit and attempt to prove someone wrong if the criticism is levelled at you. If someone is praising you, then try to prove them right."
Ireland are without injured captain Seamus Coleman as well as Jonathan Walters, Robbie Brady and Stephen Ward.
However, striker Shane Long should be fit after recovering from an ankle injury.
- Republic of Ireland conceded as many goals in their last match vs Denmark (1-5, in November 2017's World Cup playoff second leg), as they had in their previous six meetings combined.
- Republic of Ireland have lost their last two competitive matches, conceding nine goals in the process. They haven't lost three consecutive competitive games since October 2013.
- Republic of Ireland haven't mustered more than three shots on target in any of their last 10 games in all competitions (21 in total).
- Ireland have won two of their last three home games (losing vs Denmark), they last won consecutive home matches in October 2016.
- Denmark goalkeeper Kasper Schmeichel has kept a clean sheet in seven of his last nine appearances for the national team.
- Republic of Ireland's Shane Long has found the net in just one of his last 18 appearances, scoring against Moldova in a World Cup qualifier in October 2016.
Charlie Nicholas' prediction
Ireland need to sort themselves out, with talks of players falling out with Roy Keane. I think it's time for someone in charge to say we just need to grow up here. There's not a lot of goal scoring in this game but there'll be personal pride to play for with Ireland and I think it'll be physical and they'll just about get the job done. It's a strange one but I think Jeff Hendrick could pop up with the winner here from midfield.
CHARLIE PREDICTS: 1-0 (7/1 with Sky Bet)