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UEFA EURO 2020 contenders in focus: Scotland

UEFA.com looks at Scotland's history and pedigree as they prepare for their third EURO.

Scotland celebrate qualifying for UEFA EURO 2020
Scotland celebrate qualifying for UEFA EURO 2020

EURO pedigree

Final tournaments: 2
EURO best: group stage (1992, 1996)

Scotland have recorded some memorable victories in EURO qualification, however, the Tartan Army have managed to reach the group stage just twice. Of their two appearances, Craig Brown's side came closest to making the knockout phase at EURO '96, when they were a Patrick Kluivert consolation goal away from the quarter-finals. Instead, the Scots were left to curse another hard-luck story, as the Netherlands progressed on goals scored alongside hosts England.

Key players

Every goal on Scotland's road to EURO 2020
Every goal on Scotland's road to EURO 2020

John McGinn (29 caps, 7 goals)
Whether it's snapping into tackles, providing killer passes or popping up with important goals, McGinn sets the tempo and is the beating heart of the Scottish midfield.

Lyndon Dykes (7 caps, 2 goals)
The Australia-born striker was a late addition to Steve Clarke's squad, but the physical presence of Dykes, allied to his deft touches, has given the Scots a much-needed focal point in attack. He's already scored against Scotland's first opponents, Czech Republic, in the UEFA Nations League in September 2020.

Memorable EURO goals

• Ally McCoist's stunning strike against Switzerland had the Tartan Army dreaming of a place in the last eight at EURO '96, only for Kluivert to score a vital consolation goal against England to take the Netherlands through instead.

• James McFadden's incredible long-range goal at the Parc des Princes secured a famous double victory over France in the 2008 qualifiers. However, it wasn't enough for Alex McLeish's side, who missed out on the finals after losing to world champions Italy in the final match at Hampden.

• In 1967, the British Home Championship – contested between Scotland, England, Wales and Northern Ireland – counted as UEFA EURO 1968 qualification. Jim McCalliog's winner against England at Wembley inflicted the first defeat on Sir Alf Ramsay's 1966 World Cup-winning side.

Memorable moments

Watch the moment Scotland made it to EURO 2020
Watch the moment Scotland made it to EURO 2020

• For a moment, David Marshall wasn't sure if he could celebrate, but by saving Aleksander Mitrović's penalty in the EURO 2020 play-off final shoot-out against Serbia, Scotland had ended a 22-year wait to reach a major finals.

• Scotland's relationship with penalties hasn’t always been so positive, most notably against England in 1996. Trailing 1-0, the Scots were in the ascendency. However, David Seaman saved Gary McAllister's spot kick, followed minutes later by Paul Gascoigne's exquisite finish, to put the result beyond doubt.

• At EURO '92 the team might not have progressed past the group stage, but the 5,000 fans who travelled to Sweden were given UEFA's Fair Play Award for their friendly and sporting conduct.


Most final tournament appearances
6: Andy Goram, Gary McAllister, Stuart McCall
5: Gordon Durie, Stewart McKimmie, Ally McCoist
4: Tom Boyd, Kevin Gallacher.

EURO '96 flashback: Scotland's last EURO win
EURO '96 flashback: Scotland's last EURO win

Most final tournament goals
1: Ally McCoist, Paul McStay, Brian McClair, Gary McAllister

Killer stat: Until they qualified for UEFA EURO 2020, Scotland hadn't featured in a major finals since the 1998 FIFA World Cup.

Did you know?

Scotland won two penalty shoot-outs in UEFA EURO 2020 qualifying: the play-off semi-final against Israel, and the play-off final against Serbia. They scored all ten kicks.


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