Republic humiliate Denmark
Keane and Long on target
By Andrew Scurr. Last Updated: August 23, 2007 6:15am
Keane: First-half brace
Two goals apiece from Robbie Keane and Shane Long gave Republic of Ireland a resounding 4-0 win in Denmark.
Tottenham's Keane netted twice in the first half before Reading striker Long scored two goals just after half-time for Steve Staunton's men.
Staunton will have been pleased with the Republic's performance ahead of next month's Euro 2008 qualifiers.
Ireland suffered an early scare when Wayne Henderson spilled Niclas Jensen's corner but the goalkeeper was bailed out by his defenders.
Arsenal striker Nicklas Bendtner struck the crossbar with a header on 13 minutes and John Dahl Tomasson was denied by a good save down low from Henderson as Denmark made the better start.
The Danes were full of confidence and Daniel Agger's effort from 40 yards out was not too far over Henderson's goal.
But just before the half-hour mark Keane struck as he dinked the ball beyond Jesper Christiansen in the Denmark goal after he was put through by a delightful pass from Andy Reid.
The goal was the Spurs striker's 30th for the Republic and it did not take him long to register his 31st as he completed a first-half double ten minutes later.
Aiden McGeady's near-post cross was met by a diving Keane and he bravely put his head between the ball and Christiansen and got his reward with his second of the game.
Jesper Gronkjaer stung the hands of Henderson from the edge of the area just before the break but Ireland's two-goal advantage was safe going into half-time.
Ireland extended their lead further on 53 minutes when some poor goalkeeping from Christiansen gifted Long a goal.
Christiansen failed to get the ball safe from Darron Gibson's shot when he only parried the ball straight into the path of Long who had the simplest of finishes from 12 yards out.
The Danish keeper held Daryl Murphy's header moments later but was unable to deny Long a second as the Reading striker slotted home into the bottom corner midway through the second half.
Denmark pushed for a goal in front of their fans but Peter Lovenkrands blazed high and wide and it was John O'Shea who almost scored a consolation for the home side when his header back towards his own goal dropped just wide.
Bendtner hit the woodwork for a second time and William Kvist went close, but Henderson would not be beaten in the Republic goal.
|Denmark||Team Statistics||Republic of Ireland|
|0||1st Half Goals||2|
|6||Shots on Target||7|
|8||Shots off Target||0|
Wed 22nd Aug
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Russia2 - 2Poland
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