Conor Hourihane played 68 minutes as the Republic of Ireland fell narrowly short of qualification.
The Republic of Ireland hosted Denmark at The Aviva Stadium in a must-win game for the home side. Denmark just needed a draw to progress and they managed to sneak through.
Martin Braithwaite’s 73rd-minute goal put Denmark into a commanding position with the hosts needing to score twice in 17 minutes. Matt Doherty did bring the Republic of Ireland level on 85 minutes but it was too little too late at that point.
Hourihane hauled off
Hourihane was named in the starting line-up, operating in a central midfield position. However, with the Boys in Green still chasing a goal, Mick McCarthy decided Hourihane was the man to take off.
This decision did not go down too well among some Republic of Ireland fans. Hourihane is renowned for his set-piece delivery. Many fans felt that the 28-year-old would have offered more than Jeff Hendrick, Glenn Whelan and James McClean towards the end of the game.
Here are some tweets about McCarthy’s decision to take Hourihane off.
Mick tactics with his subs strange.. hourihane was controlling middle park !!! Hendrick was having mare leaves him on ?♂️?♂️?♂️ McGoldrick kept dropping into middle pick up ball.. nobody told him get up top …
— ross carrig (@RossCarrig) November 18, 2019
Hourihane should have stayed on Hendrick off at HT for me stinker ??♂️
— Gaz Shaw (@ShawsyG8) November 18, 2019
Hourihane should be the last midfielder taken off there, Hendricks that bad Mick doesn’t realize he’s still out there
— Ciarán Farrell (@CiaranF96) November 18, 2019
Hourihane probably our best player. Hendrick smh
— Keith (@_Strawbs_) November 18, 2019
Takes off hourihane? and leaves Glenn Whelan,Hendrick and mc clean still on??? What do these players have on McCarthy ?
— Luke darling (@Lukedarling19) November 18, 2019
Take off Hourihane, lose game control, concede. Playoffs it is I guess.
— Kieran Doyle (@KierDoyle) November 18, 2019