Netherlands 0
Republic of Ireland 0

The Republic of Ireland women's team have earned a crucial point in their away World Cup qualifier against European champions the Netherlands, but it came in controversial circumstances. 

The home side were screaming for a penalty in the 86th minute following calls for a hand ball, but despite protests from the Holland players, the referee declined to point to the spot. 

Some of the Netherlands contingent continued to express their frustrations after the final whistle, complaining to the referee on the pitch.

In truth, Colin Bell's side were hugely fortunate to come away with a point, and soaked up an abundance of pressure from the opposition. 

The Netherlands had several chances to break the deadlock throughout the 90 minutes, but between shots trailing off target, and some crucial defensive play, they failed to find the target.

To Ireland's credit, there were some notable performances around the pitch. Denise O'Sullivan put in an exceptional shift and her irrepressible work-rate enabled her to cover a lot of ground, and execute some significant tackles.

Harriet Scott was impassable at the back, and her defensive display forced the Netherlands' management to withdraw the player she was tracking, Shanice Janice van de Sanden.

And despite the bombardment of attacks coming their way, Ireland's defensive unit did what was necessary to hold firm and protect their consecutive run of clean sheets in this World Cup qualifying campaign.

It should also be noted that Ireland secured this result without the services of some of their most integral servants, including Áine O'Gorman, Stephanie Roche and Megan Campbell. 

Ireland were under sustained pressure from the early stages of the first half. Two goal-line interventions from Tyler Toland, coupled with some crucial saves from goalkeeper Marie Hourihan, ensured that Bell's side would stay on par with the Netherlands.

Clearances failed to find Irish jerseys as the European champions bombarded the visiting side with a succession of attacks.

Denise O'Sullivan covered considerable ground for Ireland, while Harriet Scott produced some important defensive play throughout the opening period.

Bodies tired as half-time approached, and Holland's Miedema came agonisingly close to breaking the deadlock with a shot from distance that crashed back into play off the butt of the post.

Ireland managed to engineer some chances on the other side, with Amber Barrett getting three goal-bound shots off inside the first fifteen minutes.

There were half-calls for an Ireland penalty in the first 10 minutes. A perfectly weighted pass put Barrett in a one-on-one situation, but while sprinting towards the Dutch goals, she was muscled off the ball by a defender.

Ireland made a change at half-time, with Leanne Kiernan coming on for Amber Barrett. 

The second period was a continuation of the first, but Ireland managed to survive and continue their quest to qualify for the World Cup.