Jonathan Walters was the Republic of Ireland hero on Sunday evening, but the bustling frontman was left cursing a slow start and late disallowed goal in his side's 1-1 draw against Austria.

Walters volleyed home the leveller with five minutes to go after Martin Hinteregger fired the visitors ahead in the first half.

That set up a frantic finale in which Shane Duffy had a header chalked off for a foul, but Walters believes Spanish referee David Fernandez Borbalan got that - and a penalty shout - wrong.

"We should have come out winners," he told RTÉ Sport.

"Big Shane Duffy has got a goal at the end - no chance it's a free-kick. Just before that it's a penalty on me as I've pulled my foot back. There's contact just before I've hit the ball.

"We're thoroughly disappointed but we're still in it, we're still unbeaten. We wanted three points, we didn't get them, but we're still in it."

Ireland were strangely lethargic in the opening period as the Austrians displayed greater composure and urgency.

Walters admitted he was at a loss to explain their bad start, but felt his team-mates responded with much-improved display that ultimately got its rewards.

"The first half, we were slow with our tempo, the opposite of what we wanted to do. That's not us. It was much better second half.

"There's no one more disappointed than us at the way we started. It was a slow tempo. We can't be like that at home. We've got to lift the fans, get the tempo going, get the whole place bouncing.

"We didn't do that. In the second half we came out, made amends for that and as I said we should have come out winners."