Behind bolted doors, the revolution took another inconvenient turn, Lansdowne falling silent as a tomb when it was over.
With a gently comedic flourish, the tannoy operator wished everybody a "safe journey home", ignoring the small detail that getting into the stadium would have required more ingenuity than getting out of Rikers Island.
Temperature tests; hand sanitising stations and walkways policed with the rigour of prison corridors greeted the few press orphans permitted access.
And an empty stadium can take on the whimsical energy of a living, breathing organism. You could all but hear the big silver bowl creak and sigh yesterday, exhale with indifference while Ireland wrestled vainly with Stephen Kenny's embryonic game-plan.
Individual voices - edgy and impatient at pitch-level - rebounded up off the stadium curves like pinballs.
So the game struggled to fit any specific contour, Ireland - palpably - wanting to play but the Finns resisting with blowtorch defiance. The result was a featureless tangle of half-promises rather than the yearned-for trumpeting of a new faith.
Kenny's philosophy needs to become spontaneous, subconscious, but that takes time on the training ground. A commodity not broadly available to international managers.
Attention to detail can be tricky at this level. Pathological attention to detail a pipe-dream.
So he must work, essentially, on the run here, hot-housing his new creed, yet seeking an instant efficiency too that can withstand the heightening pressure looming next month in Bratislava.
And that efficiency was conspicuously missing here, Finland playing sharper, more coherent football that made Ireland's attempted high line look, continually, like something just tentative, half-baked. The pressing was vague, the gaps between midfield and defence sometimes cavernous.
His players are still, it's clear, merely skirting the edge of Kenny's world, looking for connection. So the warnings came spilling through from kick-off.
Teemu Pukki's ninth-minute miss was glaring, his shot failing to beat Darren Randolph despite the Finnish striker being waved through on goal like a VIP dipping backstage. A few in green glared admonishingly across at the linesman, just a lazy, ritual reflex. And, in this instance, a glaringly empty one.
There was little early tempo to Ireland's work then, scant identifiable impetus. True, the echoey acoustic can't have helped. It felt, at times, as if they might as well have been in the RDS, competing for scraps of silk at a dog-show. The team needed a spark, maybe even some tipping point of anger given the symphony of outrage audible even from our vertiginous perch whenever visiting tackles carried an ounce of sting.
Mindset is a challenge in this environment and sometimes it takes a crowd to impose honesty on a team. To filter out diffidence.
The Finnish goal, when it came, was no real aberration then. Just an act faithful to the evidence that this was an Irish selection still trying to get a fix on their manager's vision. One struggling with every tactical wrinkle, every second line.
Substitute, Jensen, was maybe just 30 seconds on the field when granted that 63rd-minute far-post tap-in, a goal to fit the darkening simplicity.
So where to now?
Across the years, Ireland teams have been a largely homogeneous creation, rooted to the wooden hand of circumstance.
High-energy, aggressive, honest, broadly unencumbered by aesthetic concerns, the need to survive superseding any will to be constructive.
So Kenny is the apostate here, the denouncer of a limited past. He's selling a gospel of optimism that challenges the group-think of hit-and-hope being in our football DNA rather than a consequence of limited, unambitious coaching.
And he's no popinjay, looking for attention here. But he knows too that this isn't the soundtrack of proportion coming his way now.
In seeking to be different, he indirectly challenges those who - before him - didn't.
That, at least, is the perception of plenty who see this as an exercise in conceit now. A fantasy even.
The new manager seeks not so much structure in the team as definition, some mark of recognisable ambition.
But it wasn't especially apparent here and therein resides his difficulty now. When the search for progress becomes a chronicling of shortcomings, you have your work cut out selling the idea that this is the path to a better, smarter future.
You end up just talking abstractedly. Selling theory.
As the September sun paled and the lights came on, you could sense Finland grow with the realisation that this was all rather more comfortable than expected.
Yes, the Irish poured forward as they always will when left with something to chase. Yes, there was an accumulation of fleeting chances too.
But the Finish goalkeeper had less to do than Darren Randolph over the 90 minutes, a line tugging us towards maybe, the only assessment worth making of this game.
You see, by the end, Ireland's best hope was an old hope, a return to the heavy mortar-fire of long crosses.
In the 88th minute, Shane Duffy almost reprised his Sofia salvage act from another Robbie Brady corner and you had to imagine it was a moot point if the manager would have welcomed another escape that way. After all, what exactly would it have communicated?
He looked ashen at the end, touching elbows with his Finnish counterpart before standing, hands on hips, for a touchline debrief with Keith Andrews. Just two games into this job, he will hope his inexperience elicits patience.
But he knows too that this isn't a style business. In Slovakia next month, possession stats will be meaningless if the outcome is defeat.
Not even Covid will thieve the air from a stark post-mortem should that happen, so - in a sense - he is already fighting a war here.
And he looks a man who knows it.