The Tartan Army were given a harsh reality check on Friday night in Munich as Scotland were thumped 5-1 by Germany.

The Euros opener couldn’t have gone any worse for Steve Clarke’s side, who couldn’t get close to the hosts. German pressure was constant, and Scotland was unable to escape their own half.

Scotland Players Callum McGregor and John McGinn
Soccer Football – Euro 2024 Qualifier – Group A – Scotland v Norway – Hampden Park, Glasgow, Scotland, Britain – November 19, 2023
Scotland’s John McGinn and Callum McGregor Action Images via Reuters/Lee Smith

Four Celts – Greg Taylor, James Forrest, Callum McGregor, and Anthony Ralston – were in the matchday squad for the Scots, with the two latter among the starters. Nor McGregor or Ralston, though, captured the imagination.

The Hoops’ skipper came off with just over 20 minutes to go after a performance that was by no means impressive.

McGregor was arguably key – for all the wrong reasons – in the build-up to Germany’s second goal.

He didn’t get close enough to Ilkay Gundogan in midfield before being turned to great effect by Jamal Musiala in the box, who then slammed home.

It was a sobering night for the 31-year-old, who, after being bitterly put down by Graeme Souness, has now come in for criticism at the hands of legendary Manchester United midfielder now-turned-pundit, Roy Keane.

He said (live on ITV via RecordSport): “Look at McGregor here, you cannot gamble in the middle of the park against these players.

“There is no need. Stay goal side. He is an experienced player, use your head.”

With Scotland now bottom of Group A, bouncing back against Switzerland on Wednesday is a must. Four points can get them to the last 16 of the Euros but right now, that feels like a fever dream.


  1. Why is calmac being made a scapegoat, when Scotland had 4 midfielders within the central midfield areas, and not 1 of them could be regarded as strong defensively?
    Calmac has never been, or never will be a defensive midfielder?
    The defensive side of calmac game has never been the strongest element within the game of calmac, but isn’t such a huge requirement for ourselves in most of the matches we play in imo?
    Would be expecting iwata to be used more so next season in seeing games out, if we find ourselves in a leading position, as Rodgers did on a few occasions last season that worked out decent enough?
    If you have 4 forward thinking midfielders playing centrally and without any width, then fail to see how they were massive tactical mistakes, which is upon the manager in how he set the team up imo?
    The 4 central midfielders required to be in control of the football with more possession, to become more effective, but was a big ask, especially when the Germans were able to close the passing lines down so easily, and Scotland never had an out ball?
    Don’t watch very many Scottish matches, but sadly feel the manager got everything wrong before the game and the players following suit during it imo?
    Bad night admittedly for our player’s, but hardly helped by having to play roles within a team that they never looked comfortable at doing?
    Just how many others within the team, found themselves in the same situation for Scotland last night?
    That’s upon the manager more so, than trying to make scapegoats out of the player’s, especially our ones imo?


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