John Hartson has applauded Tottenham playmaker Christian Eriksen on his Twitter account after he scored a marvellous hat-trick for Denmark to dash Ireland's dreams of qualifying for the 2018 World Cup.
Martin O'Neill's Ireland came into the play-off match with plenty of optimism after holding the likes of Eriksen, Nicklas Bendtner and Pione Sisto to a 0-0 draw back in Denmark on Saturday.
However, former Ajax ace Eriksen upped his game dramatically in Dublin on Tuesday night, putting the Ireland defence to the sword with three goals, while a Bendtner strike and a Cyrus Christie own goal succumbed Ireland to a heavy loss.
Former Celtic and Wales striker Hartson stated Eriksen's quality was "difficult to defend against" as the 25-year-old Tottenham ace shone on the international stage.
Just seen Eriksen Hatrick.. difficult to defend against that quality of player.. 2nd goal is class !— John Hartson (@JohnHartson10) November 14, 2017
Brighton defender Shane Duffy had given Ireland the lead after a defensive mix-up, but Cyrus Christie inadvertently put through his own net after the ball ricocheted off the post.
Then, Eriksen's class showed. A sweeping effort saw him curl one in off the bar from the edge of the area to put Denmark into the lead, before he found the corner of Darren Randolph's net in the 63rd minute from a similar distance.
He made it four and completed his hat-trick with 15 minutes left to play, capitalising on a loose ball to fire into the roof of the net. Denmark were not finished there though, as former Arsenal striker Bendtner scored a penalty.
Eriksen is expected to start for Tottenham as Mauricio Pochettino's men face bitter rivals Arsenal at the Emirates Stadium in Saturday's lunchtime kick-off.
Have something to tell us about this article?