Steve Clark out of the shadows of Scotland

Steve Clark out of the shadows of Scotland

By qualifying Scotland for their first major competition since the 1998 World Cup, Steve Clarke achieved a feat that is unlikely to lead to a coach who is already out of the Euro (June 11–July 11). looks ahead.

The night of November 2020 when Scotland snatched their qualification (1-1, 5-4 on penalties) in Serbia, after slipping a goal in the last minute of regulation time, will be long remembered. Highlanders”.

“If you had told supporters before Steve was appointed that we had to beat Serbia at home to go to the Euros, everyone would have said to you: ‘For what?”, said the Scottish Federation executive a few days ago. Director, Ian Maxwell. For the leader, Clark’s arrival was “an extraordinary recruit”.

Just three years before Belgrade, today 57-year-old Clarke looked lost to football.

After a very respectable career as a player, most notably with pre-Abramovi Chelsea, where he was one of the pioneers of the modern right-back who doubled in attack, he took to the bench as an assistant. Started an intelligent career as

At Newcastle, Chelsea, West Ham then Liverpool, he learned the trade from Ruud Gullit, Bobby Robson, Jose Mourinho, Gianfranco Zola, Roberto Di Matteo or Kenny Dalglish. Great teaching team.

shaken by wife

“And it’s no coincidence,” said John Carver, Clark’s assistant on the Scottish Staff, upon learning of her at the Magpies. Carver praises her “attention to detail,” her “ability to remain calm,” and her communication skills. “He is firm when necessary but treats everyone with respect.”

Clarke went to number one at West Bromwich Albion in 2012.

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A major success in the first season with a record of wins and points in the Premier League, but the result was less fortunate, until an unsuccessful freelancing as Zola’s assistant at Aston Villa in 2016 which led to a whitewash.

“I’ve had fun, I’ve rested,” he assured SportsMail last April.

But “my wife thought I was bored and frustrated. Maybe when I was watching football matches and cursing the television. He realized I was too young to retire and convinced me to get back to work. “

He returned from Kilmarnock for the last time in the Scottish Championship, when he took it in October 2017 and finished 5th this season and 3rd in the next one.

While the big clubs are interested in him, Clarke opts for the national selection.

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“He took the risk of taking the job,” said his former Chelsea teammate and Scottish international Craig Burley.

“The Scotland coach job has been the graveyard of many coaches – many have come and made a fool of themselves (…) It was not easy, but they got the job done.”

After a chaotic 4–0 start and stinging blows against Belgium and Russia, they played nine games in defeat to secure a ticket to the Euros.

His system with three central defenders, capable of offering infinite variations in animation, appears to be the case now, even if he intends to refine it further.

At Euros, “we won’t have two normal training sessions before we play three matches in ten days. I will have time on the pitch with the players to improve myself as a team, fix a thing or two,” he explained during the presentation of 26.

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“Staying together for so long this summer should bear fruit in the World Cup qualifiers this fall,” said one who always sees the blow later.

Before that, we have to cut this Euro, so that Scotland can finally pass the first round of a major competition.

“You don’t have to go there to count,” Clark said.

“With the qualification achieved in Serbia, the boys have become heroes. If we can get out of the group stage, they will become legends, so why not aim for that?”

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