An open, even game somehow ended goalless between these great rivals as Scotland raised their last-16 hopes.
England and Scotland had to settle for a Group D draw at Wembley, John Stones’ first-half header against the upright as close as either side came in an end-to-end UEFA EURO 2020 encounter.
Match in brief
The weather may have been decidedly dreary in north London but the action was anything but, with chances at both ends. Raheem Sterling and Mason Mount spurned early openings, while John Stones guided a header against the post with David Marshall well beaten. England No1 Jordan Pickford was also busy, pulling off a fine stop to keep out Stephen O’Donnell’s volley.
It set the tone for an end-to-end encounter, with both sets of supporters suffering spells with hearts in mouths. Reece James brilliantly blocked a Lyndon Dykes effort on the goal line and though The Three Lions enjoyed more possession as the match wore on, Scotland carried a real threat whenever they got forward.
A desperate melee in the Scots’ penalty area at the death just about summed up the evening as The Tartan Army held on, and will carry their spoils home with last-16 hopes very much alive. In truth, they could have returned with even more.
Star of the Match: Billy Gilmour (Scotland)
“He controlled the midfield, made Scotland tick and didn’t give the ball away. A strong performance from the 20-year-old.”
Robbie Keane, UEFA Technical Observer
Simon Hart, England reporter
England’s winning streak ends at seven but this was probably a point gained on an enthralling night when Scotland had the better chances. True, Stones hit a post early on but just one attempt on target is a statistic that will concern Gareth Southgate, along with the spectacle of an isolated Harry Kane struggling to make an impact for the second match running.
Alex O’Henley, Scotland reporter
This goes down as another great night for Scotland at Wembley. Steve Clarke asked for “fire in your belly” and he got that by the bucket load. The back three were immense. O’Donnell and Dykes were unlucky not to score, but at the end of the night Scotland got a point that keeps them alive in Group D.
Gareth Southgate, England coach: “It was a frustrating night. You’ve got to give Scotland huge credit. If you’re not going to win a game then it’s important that you don’t lose it. We can look at ourselves – starting with me – and do better. We didn’t do enough to win the game tonight.”
Steve Clarke, Scotland coach: “It was a good night. We played well. I know I have a good group of players and they showed that. We had chances to win. England had their moments as well and, looking at it, you wouldn’t have known which team was the favourite, which is a credit to us. The most pleasing thing was we played when we had the ball and created a number of chances.”
Andy Robertson, Scotland captain: “We had the big chances. At times we kept the ball superbly well, frustrated them and on another night we could have come away with even more. A point keeps us alive and it’s important to keep this feeling.”
Tyrone Mings, England defender: “I’m absolutely delighted with a clean sheet which is a step closer to achieving our goal. We didn’t play with enough intensity but I’ve played in plenty of performances where that has resulted in a loss.”
- The result brought an end to England’s seven-match winning run.
- The Three Lions have conceded just once in their last eight games.
- England are ten matches unbeaten in the EURO group stage (W6 D4), dating back to their last-gasp defeat by France in 2004.
- England have kept 14 clean sheets in their last 18 matches.
- Excluding penalty shoot-outs, Scotland have won just two of their last ten matches (D5 L3).
- Scotland have failed to score in six of their last eight EURO finals matches.
- This was only the second time in 18 matches in England the home side have failed to win. The other was a 1-0 defeat by Denmark last October, when The Three Lions played an hour with ten men.
- England’s starting XI against Scotland has an average age of 25 years and 31 days; their youngest ever in a major tournament.
England: Pickford; James, Stones, Mings, Shaw; Rice, Phillips; Foden (Grealish 63), Mount, Sterling; Kane (Rashford 74)
Scotland: Marshall; McTominay, Hanley, Tierney; O’Donnell, McGinn, Gilmour (Armstrong 76), McGregor, Robertson; Dykes, Adams (Nisbet 86)