England: Jordan Pickford, Reece James, John Stones, Tyrone Mings, Luke Shaw, Declan Rice, Kalvin Phillips, Mason Mount, Phil Foden, Raheem Sterling, Harry Kane
Scotland: David Marshall, Stephen O’Donnell, Hanley, Kieran Tierney, Andy Robertson, Scott McTominay, Billy Gilmour, John McGinn, Callum McGregor, Che Adams, Lyndon Dykes
Did you know that the first international match was played on the 30th of November 1872? Did you also know that it was a game between England and Scotland? The 1872 association football match between the national teams of Scotland and England is officially recognized by FIFA as the sport’s first-ever international. It took place at Hamilton Crescent, the West of Scotland Cricket Club’s ground in Partick, Glasgow.
One of the most famous football rivalries was renewed for Euro 2020. Scotland lost their opening group game to the Czech Republic after a superb performance from Patrik Schick. If they wanted to still be in the running for the knockout round, they had to get a result against England. England won Croatia in the first game of the group and they could put one leg into the round of 16 with a win against their neighbors. Gareth Southgate made two changes to the side, bringing Luke Shaw for Kieran Trippier and Reece James for Kyle Walker. Once again, no Jack Grealish. Sigh.
Che Adams got the first shot of the game as Scotland found space behind Luke Shaw. The shot was blocked though. John Stones powered a header that hit the post minutes later. So close. Mason Mount also came close to scoring when Scott McTominay was dispossessed by Raheem Sterling. Raz’s cross was too fast and could not be turned in by Mount. On 17, Reece James lofted a ball behind the Scottish defense and Phil Foden brought it down with a magnificent touch before firing wide. It would not have counted though as the youngster was offside. England continued to dominate proceedings while Scotland tried to hit them on the counter.
On 22, Reece James whipped in a fantastic cross that Harry Kane headed wide. It may not have counted as Kane was offside but it was quite the chance. A minute later and Scotland had their best chance of the game when O’Donnell volleyed a shot but Jordan Pickford was agile and got his hand to it. Adams could not get the rebound on target. What an effort! What a save!
First-Half England 0-0 Scotland.
No changes at halftime. England came out determined and Marshall had to be alert to keep a rasping Mount drive out. Reece James failed to hit the target from the front of the box when the ball was set up for him. Jack Grealish is now warming up. Tyrone Mings cleared a great cross with his head and Reece James had to dash back and do the same to prevent Dykes’ left-footed volley from going in. Grealish comes on for Foden. On 73, Mount combined with Shaw to set the latter free but his cross was wayward and flew over everyone. Marcus Rashford replaces a lethargic Kane while Stuart Armstrong replaces Gilmour who has been unplayable and the best Scottish player on the pitch.
On 77, Robertson sent a delicious cross into the box and Stones could not head clear. It fell for Adams at the back post but he skewed his shot wide. There was a legitimate penalty claim when Robbo stepped on Sterling but Mateu Lahoz deemed it too soft or perhaps he thought the ball was heading out of play already. Kevin Nisbet came on for Adams. In the final minute of the game, James and Rice worked the ball into the box but there were enough Scottish bodies to prevent a military invasion and it came to nothing. It finished England 0-0 Scotland.
Billy Gilmour who was making his first full start picked up the man-of-the-match award.
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