No goal: Scotland defends unimaginable British

No goal: Scotland defends unimaginable British

Scott John McGuin (L) is on the ball in a duel in front of Raheem Sterling.

© Facundo Arrizabalaga / Pool EPA / AP / dpa

England’s highly acclaimed attack largely faded in the second European Championship game. Nevertheless, the three lions can plan the next round. The Scots celebrate a draw like a victory over their arch rivals.

LONDON – Scotland fans celebrate a minute-long party in the stands after the final whistle, with most English supporters looking for a quick exit.

In the incessant rain in London, Bravehearts fans cheered for a 0–0 victory over their arch-rivals and celebrated their team with gusto. While the English took first place in this European Football Championship and missed an early jump in the round of 16, the Scots could also be dreaming of reaching the knockout stage thanks to a surprise points win. But they need a win in their last group match against Croatia on Tuesday. England are playing against the Czech Republic at the same time.

Play “Tough” and “Tough”

England captain Harry Kane said after the not-so-glamorous but certainly exciting classic at Wembley, “Praise to Scotland, he defended very well.” The result is “fine” because his team “did not perform well” and “did not create enough chances”. The game was “hard” and “hard”. “We wanted to stay out and survive,” said Scottish midfielder Billy Gilmour, who was named man of the match. And the outsider had succeeded.

The mood was charged even before the 115th edition of Evergreen began. Most of the 22,500 spectators blew a loud whistle with the Scots national anthem. When players from both teams took their knees for a moment just before kick-off, as announced earlier, to send a common signal against discrimination and racism, there was mostly applause, but some boos as well.

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On the pitch, the favored English quickly took control. John Stones took the lead after about eleven minutes, but the post was headlong from a corner. Two minutes later, Mason Mount pushed the ball across the goal from close range. It is for a long time, but also with good opportunities. The Three Lions, whose starting eleven averaged 25 years and 31 days and thus the youngest Englishman in a World Cup or European Championship match, had more possession of the ball, but had hardly any consideration in further play. His appearance was initially reminiscent of a 1–0 win against Croatia, when he started with a swing and then subsided.

Scotland Strong

Scots relied largely on their defense to recover from an injury, on the defensive, on fighting and passion, but now and then on the offensive tone. Like in the fourth minute, when a shot from Che Adams was blocked after a good combination. Or in the 30th minute, England goalkeeper Jordan Pickford played a strong innings against Stephen O’Donnell. As the first half progressed, the guests seemed more daring – and the English fans were more dissatisfied.

The English also started the second half early, but they were rarely really dangerous. Mount Scotland failed with a low shot to goalkeeper David Marshall (48th), Reece James shot away (55th) from a promising position. The right-back was then challenged backwards from Chelsea and saved a brilliant effort on the line (62nd) by Lyndon Dykes.

The game remained exciting, but England ahead remained unimaginable for a long time. Coach Gareth Southgate tried to halt the home team’s attack with new staff, first bringing in Jack Grealish and then Marcus Rashford for the hapless James Foden and Kane. Dortmund’s Jadon Sancho, who was in the English team this time, unlike the first game against Croatia, remained on the bench. In the 78th minute, Adams almost ensured the Bravehearts’ sensational victory, but opened fire on him. So the new version of the world’s oldest football duel ended like its premiere 149 years ago in Glasgow: 0-0. DPA

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