Mile Jedinak earned Australia a battling draw from the penalty spot to keep their faint hopes of qualifying from Group C alive – but it was not without controversy from the Video Assistant Referee.
Australia named an unchanged side as they looked to pick up their first points of the 2018 World Cup from their Group C clash against Denmark.
The Socceroos were narrowly beaten 2-1 by France in their opening fixture but coach Bert van Marwijk resisted the temptation to make alterations – meaning Tim Cahill once again started on the bench.
Denmark, who started with a 1-0 success against Peru, made one enforced change in Samara as Lasse Schone came in for the injured William Kvist.
It was Denmark who broke the deadlock in the seventh minute courtesy of a sensational strike from Christian Eriksen. Nicolai Jorgensen flicked a pass into the path of Eriksen on the edge of the box and the Tottenham midfielder smashed a half-volley, left-footed, into the roof of the net.
Australia played their way back into the game and equalised in the 38th minute. The Aussies forced a corner and Mathew Leckie saw his goal-bound effort blocked by Poulsen, prompting claims for handball. The referee reviewed the play and, after consultation with VAR, pointed to the spot. Jedinak stepped up to send Kasper Schmeichael the wrong way.
Australia came agonisingly close to taking the lead in the 70th minute as Schmeichel dropped a cross that landed at Leckie’s feet, the midfielder smashed the ball across goal but Henrik Dalsgaard was able to make an excellent clearance from under his own bar.
The result leaves Denmark leading the group on four points ahead of France’s match against Peru this afternoon. Australia are currently third with one point.