Australia stay alive for another day and saved their hopes of reaching the World Cup knockout stage after Mile Jedinak’s penalty secured a first Group C point against Denmark.
Christian Eriksen put Denmark ahead with a super finish after Nicolai Jorgensen’s clever lay-off.
Christian Eriksen is the first no.10 to score for Denmark at the #WorldCup since Michael Laudrup in 1998.
A glorious way to open the scoring. pic.twitter.com/GS1QiWiqO8
— Squawka Football (@Squawka) June 21, 2018
Australia levelled through Jedinak’s penalty awarded after a video assistant referee (VAR) review.
Yussuf Poulsen’s close-range handball was analysed on video before the referee pointed to the spot.
In an absorbing encounter, Aston Villa’s Jedinak sent Kasper Schmeichel the wrong way for his second goal of the tournament.
— OptaJoe (@OptaJoe) June 21, 2018
Aaron Mooy went close from distance for Australia before Denmark’s Pione Sisto was left holding his head after a curling shot from outside the area flashed just wide.
The point was enough to take Denmark to the top of Group C on four points, one ahead of France who play Peru on Tuesday, while Australia can still advance to the knockout stage.
Denmark have not reached the last 16 since 2002 but Age Hareide’s side are in a strong position to advance in Russia after following up victory over Peru with a hard-earned point.
They got off to a flying start thanks to a sublime finish by Eriksen, Mathew Ryan beaten by the pace and power of the Tottenham player’s first-time finish.
Eriksen has now had a hand in 18 goals in his past 15 appearances for Denmark – 13 goals, 5 assists – yet the Danes were unable to build on their strong start.
Jorgensen could not find the target with a free header after sneaking behind Australia’s defence while Sisto wasted a further two chances.
Denmark’s final group game is against France. If they still need a result in that game to progress to the last 16, they will have to be more ruthless in front of goal.
Denmark next face France in Moscow’s Luzhniki Stadium on 26 June, the same time that Australia face Peru in Sochi.