Denmark 0-0 Tunisia: Carthage Eagles survive late VAR drama after impressive World Cup 2022 display

Held: Dark horses Denmark drew with an impressive Tunisia side  (Getty Images)
Held: Dark horses Denmark drew with an impressive Tunisia side (Getty Images)

If one of the many concerns heading into the Qatar World Cup was a lack of soul in the stadiums, Tuesday’s action went some way into addressing at least that issue.

Hours after Saudi Arabia’s shock win over Argentina, Tunisia held a Denmark team tipped as dark horses to a more-than-creditable draw.

Backed by a huge support at the Education City Stadium, the Carthage Eagles posed major questions of one of Europe’s best teams, forcing a fantastic reflex save from Kasper Schmeichel to deny Issam Jebali (who also had a goal ruled out through offside) from close range in the first-half.

Four years ago against England, Tunisia proved as hard to watch as they were to beat. Here, Jalel Kadri’s side were much more proactive, channelling a partisan support into an effective high press, a swarm even Denmark’s highly-skilled midfield struggled to deal with.

Aside from Andreas Cornelius’ late chance on the line following Andreas Christensen’s knockdown, the Danes were sorely lacking up front. Whether unable to break a well-organised Tunisia team down or unwilling to risk their genuine threat on the counter, little about Kasper Hjulmand’s team looked convincing going forward.

There was late drama as Denmark’s appeals for a late penalty were denied despite the referee going to the VAR monitor, in what felt like a big moment in the tournament.

In front of arguably - or at least on par with Saudi’s win - the best atmosphere so far, Tunisia held strong.