Denmark led 2-0 at the break with goals from Gustav Bonde Dahl and Oliver Roche before extending their lead to 4-0 in the second half – Jonathan Pank Iverson and Lasse Kaihoj with the goals.
Ireland fought back with St Patrick’s Athletic forward Tom Lonergan and Burton Albion’s John Joe Power reducing the deficit to 4-2.
Lonergan rounded the keeper and coolly slotted home to make it 4-1 on 63 minutes with Power finding the top right-hand corner for Ireland’s second in injury time.
Ireland Under-16 Head Coach Paul Osam said: “It was a tough game and Denmark were very impressive. They played a system that we found very difficult to cope with but this is a team that are taking their first step up from Under-15 level to Under-16 level and the demands are more intense in the international game.
“The squad is a work in progress and I’ve been in this job for four years and I know the progression of players from the beginning of the season to the end is phenomenal. I’m confident if we played a team of Denmark’s standard in February it would be a different story.”
Ireland face hosts England at St George’s Park on Thursday and Osam says there were some key learnings from the Denmark game.
He added: “I’m happy the players never gave up, never allowed their heads to drop and got their rewards in the second half with two goals. There are always learnings from the games but England will be a different challenge and we will work hard to prepare for that game.”
Republic of Ireland: Jack Ross (GK), John Ryan, Sean Grehan, Aaron O’Reilly, Luke McGlynn (John Joe Power, 40), Evan Ferguson, Michael Leddy (Edwin Agbaje, 40), Cian Kelly (Ben Quinn, 56), Sean Fitzpatrick (Tom Lonergan, 56), Ben Curtis (C) (Tommy Fogarty, 69), James Abankwah (Glory Nzingo, 69).
Substitutes: Aaron Maguire (GK), Daragh Reilly, Jamie Mullins
Denmark: Frederik Bach Jensen, Jakob Leerhoj Larsen, Hjalte Anderson, Marius Haudrum Jacobsen (C), Gustav Julius Mortensen, Gustav Bonde Dahl, Mikkel Rosleff Fischer, Oliver Roche, Lasse Kailhoj, Solomon Opoku, Mathias Dahl Sauer
Substitutes: Jacob Perelman, Silas Andersen, Oliver Sylvest, Gustav Orsoe Christensen, Jeppe Kjaer Jensen, Pontus Andy Texel, Lauge Sandgrav, Marcus Ryu Alstrup, Jonathan Pank Iversen.
Republic of Ireland squad
Goalkeepers: Jack Ross (Bray Wanderers), Aaron Maguire (Tottenham Hotspur)
Defenders: Tommy Fogarty (Birmingham City), John Ryan (Shamrock Rovers), Darragh Reilly (Sligo Rovers), Ben Curtis (Shamrock Rovers), Sean Grehan (Bohemians), James Abankwah (St Patrick’s Athletic), Aaron O’Reilly (St Patrick’s Athletic)
Midfielders: Luke McGlynn (Finn Harps), Glory Nzingo (St Patrick’s Athletic), Jamie Mullins (Bohemians), John Joe Power (Burton Albion)
Forwards: Cian Kelly (Bohemians), Ben Quinn (St Patrick’s Athletic), Edwin Agbaje (Shamrock Rovers), Sean Fitzpatrick (Wexford Youths), Evan Ferguson (Bohemians), Michael Leddy (Shamrock Rovers), Tom Lonergan (St Patrick’s Athletic)
20/08: Ireland 2-4 Denmark
22/08: England v Ireland, KO 2pm, St George’s Park, England