Scotland, comeback: now more than courage is needed

Scotland, comeback: now more than courage is needed

Once upon a time there was Scottish football, with all the heart, with all the courage. That is, Scotland the Brave, the title of the hymn, performed strictly with the bagpipes and in the 1982, 1986 and 1990 World Cups, before being replaced by Scotland’s very gritty and grim flower. Because if there was one thing you couldn’t say about the Scots in football, it was that they were brave. Tough, determined. However, there was one problem: that the whole heart went nowhere. On the contrary, that was enough to give hope, but without him nothing remained in his hands.

He raised hopes then sprayed them with herbicide just before taking them in: 1974, 1978, 1982 finished for goal difference in the first round of the World Cup, and a Zaire 9 after only losing 2–0 in the first two cases. -0 destroyed. After the draw by Yugoslavia and against Iran, whose coaching staff didn’t even bother to videotape. Two mediocre games and a brilliant third (for example 3-2 against Netherlands in 1978, which qualified him despite almost everything) and here he saved his face and came up with his heroic substitute that brave, who Wanted to say more or less the same thing: rare but daring, daring but rare.

That is why the 2021 edition of Scotland, for the first time since 1998, returned to the final leg of an event (the French World Cup, neither heroic nor brave but simply devastating, including 0–3 against Morocco), a It is an enigma and time itself is a joy and a hope. Backdoor qualification, i.e. a penalty win over Serbia in Belgrade in the third-tier playoff final, left the impression that the right technical direction had finally arrived, said Steve Clarke, 57, at Newcastle under former full-back Chelsea Ruud Gullit. The assistant of his right foot, Jose Mourinho at Chelsea, his former West Ham teammate Gianfranco Zola preceded some solo exploits.

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His illustrious rehabilitation of Kilmarnock in the Scottish top flight gave him the key to the national team, which he slowly stabilized, with that solid air that feels in suit and tie, even in a suit.

Their players, against the Czech Republic this afternoon, will wear the breath, hopes and hopes of those who have not seen Scotland in the final stages for an entire generation and will now be able to see them at home, even at Hampden Park. , twice in eight days. In the middle, on Friday, the big challenge against the so-called auld foe, the old foe, England: in normal time from the north they would have fallen at least 30,000, this time due to less ability but they felt like home away from home do. And whatever happens they will be brave, be they brave or heroic, because apparently that is the only way the Scots can do it.

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