Patrick Schick Brace Gets Scotland Off to Losing Start

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It was all set up to be the perfect afternoon for Scotland as their Euro 2020 campaign kicked off. Their first appearance at a major tournament since France 98 saw them take on a Czech Republic side not widely tipped to do well in the group stage. Hampden Park felt like it was at full capacity when Flower of Scotland was belted out, despite just 9,000 being in attendance because of Covid restrictions.

However, it just wasn’t to be for the Scots. A goal in each half from Patrick Schick, the second being a probable winner for the goal of the tournament just four days in, leaves Steve Clarke’s side bottom of the group going into their next two games.

Euro 2020: Scotland Lose Opening Game Against Czech Republic

Scots Unlucky But Czechs Clinical

Scotland started the game well and were on the front foot for much of the early part of the game. John McGinn had an early chance, Lyndon Dykes possibly could have done better with a near-post effort and Andy Robertson had already created plenty of noise from the crowd before he came the closest, forcing a good save Tomas Vaclik with a placed effort that may have been better off replaced with raw power.

The Czech Republic never looked out of the game but they hadn’t really had a sniff at goal before Bayer Leverkusen striker Patrick Schick put them in front. West Ham United defender Vladimir Coufal picked up the ball after the Czechs had recycled a corner and his delivery was met by the towering striker, who got in between Liam Cooper and Grant Hanley to steer into the bottom corner.

Scotland started the second period as they had in the first, and again came close to finding the net, largely through the introduction of Che Adams at half-time. Jack Hendry saw his floated strike hit the top of the crossbar before Vaclik saved Bristol City defender Tomas Kalas from a calamitous own goal, getting back to palm away his sliced clearance.

Minutes after, though, the Czech Republic were out of sight and Scotland, having looked relatively organised previously, were all over the place. Hendry attempted a long-range effort that was well blocked, but the ricochet left Scotland badly exposed. Marshall was way out of his goal and that tempted Schick into trying his luck from just inside his own half. The floated, curling effort was sublimely placed, and all Marshall could do was flail at it as it sailed in to double the Czech’s lead.


Scotland continued to press forward in a vain attempt to get back into the game. They could perhaps feel too that they didn’t get some decisions from the referee, although they would have hardly changed the eventual outcome.

Group D as it Stands

The result means Scotland go into Friday’s massive game against England bottom of the group, with their rivals currently second after their 1-0 win against Croatia at Wembley on Sunday.

They then finish the group stages back at Hampden with what could be a deciding game against Croatia in eight days’ time.


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