Scotland are ready; they’ve waited long enough and are gearing up to stun the continent with a string of Euro 2020 fixtures heading north of the border – and Steve Clarke’s men aren’t involved to simply make up the numbers.
The Scots qualified for the tournament following a dramatic penalty shoot-out win over Serbia, their first appearance in major finals since the 1998 World Cup, meaning this will be the biggest moment in Scottish football in the lives of an entire generation of fans.
The draw has set up a firecracker encounter with England in Group D but Clarke will hope his fiery squad – filled with Premier League talents – can seize this huge opportunity with both hands and make every side they face work hard.
Kieran Tierney, Andy Robertson and Scott McTominay all boast Champions League experience and will hope to inspire the current crop of Scottish stars to great things this summer, with games to be played at Hampden Park.
Wembley will play host to England v Scotland on a Friday night later this June and London will be rocking. Can Scotland avenge the defeat England inflicted upon them at Euro ’96 on the same ground? And can Scotland plot a route in the knockout rounds?
RadioTimes.com brings you the full Scotland team guide for Euro 2020 including fixtures, the squad, key players and more.
When are Scotland playing next?
Scotland’s first fixture at Euro 2020 will see them face Czech Republic in a key clash on Monday 14th June 2021.
The match kicks off at 2pm (UK time) and will be shown live on BBC One and online via iPlayer.
Hampden Park in Glasgow will host the game, meaning Scotland are effectively playing a home fixture. Around 12,000 spectators will be permitted to watch the game from the stands – roughly 25 percent of the capacity of this famous old ground.
Monday 14th June
Game 1 – Group D: Scotland v Czech Republic (2pm)
Friday 18th June
Game 2 – Group D: England v Scotland (8pm)
Tuesday 22nd June
Game 3 – Group D: Croatia v Scotland (8pm)
Check out when and where every game is available to watch with our Euro 2020 on TV guide.
Firepower is potentially the biggest issue for Scotland but Clarke has Che Adams and Lyndon Dykes to call upon, so the boss will be banking on his midfielders and set-piece takers to lay balls on a plate for the two strikers.
Scotland will hope to beat Czech Republic and claim at least a point off either England or Croatia. Earning four points could be enough to edge through as a third-place team in the group stage, which would then see Scotland come up against a group winner.
The last-16 is therefore the farthest Scotland can realistically hope to progress. However, as we saw with Wales at Euro 2016, team spirit can take a country a long way. And perhaps the Scots will prove us wrong this summer!
Prediction: Last-16 exit
Who will win Euro 2020? Check out our full predictions as we rank and rate all 24 teams.
Goalkeepers: Craig Gordon (Hearts), David Marshall (Derby), Jon McLaughlin (Rangers)
Defenders: Liam Cooper (Leeds), Declan Gallagher (Motherwell), Grant Hanley (Norwich), Jack Hendry (Celtic), Scott McKenna (Nottingham Forest), Stephen O’Donnell (Motherwell), Nathan Patterson (Rangers), Andy Robertson (Liverpool), Greg Taylor (Celtic), Kieran Tierney (Arsenal)
Midfielders: Stuart Armstrong (Southampton), Ryan Christie (Celtic), John Fleck (Sheffield United), Billy Gilmour (Chelsea), John McGinn (Aston Villa), Callum McGregor (Celtic), Scott McTominay (Manchester United), David Turnbull (Celtic)
Forwards: Ché Adams (Southampton), Lyndon Dykes (QPR), James Forrest (Celtic), Ryan Fraser (Newcastle United), Kevin Nisbet (Hibernian)
Having enjoyed plenty of success as assistant manager under Jose Mourinho at Chelsea in the mid-2000s, Clarke earned his first managerial job at West Brom in 2012. He moved north of the border to manage Kilmarnock in 2017 and spent two years at Rugby Park before accepting the Scotland job.
Clarke arguably has a team unity that is greater than the sum of its parts. Scotland are out to prove doubters wrong this summer and the boss will demand they set the tempo early against the Czech Republic in their opening game. Whether he can inspire the Scots to a win over England remains to be seen.
Scotland key player
Arsenal and former Celtic left-back Kieran Tierney is arguably the best in his position in the Premier League right now. The 23-year-old is a disciplined defender who can bomb forward with plenty of energy for a full 90 minutes. His presence in this Scotland defence will be key, especially if they opt for five at the back – as they did to reasonable success against the Dutch in a pre-tournament friendly.
Tierney’s partnership with Andrew Robertson down the left is where Scotland will likely create most chances. Between the two of them they have the experience, temperament and quality to handle any opposition attack. Don’t be surprised if we see the pair overlapping each other when in possession.