Holland 2-2 Scotland: Memphis Depay scores late to spare the Dutch and prevent Steve Clarke’s Covid-afflicted side of a major scalp in Portugal ahead of Euro 2020
- Scotland was denied a big win over the Netherlands thanks to a late attack from the Netherlands
- Scotland took a surprising lead after 11 minutes with an attack by Jack Hendry
- The Dutch hit back six minutes later after Memphis Depay found the net
- Steve Clarke’s side took the lead again after an hour thanks to Kevin Nisbet
- However, Depay struck again to save a draw and avoid embarrassment
- Read the latest Euro 2020 news, including fixtures, live action and results here.
Scotland’s players who failed to make it to Portugal for this exhibition game have always tended to overshadow their teammates on the pitch, although a fearless display that more than deserved a draw was a welcome sight for Steve Clarke.
Seven of his squad remained at their training base in Spain after one of them, Sheffield United’s John Fleck, tested positive for Covid-19.
The boss has made some noise about their absence as being ‘ultra cautious’, and the six uninfected players are expected to train on Thursday.
Scotland deserved a strong draw for the European Championship after playing the Netherlands in Portugal
Kevin Nesbit came off the bench to put the Scots ahead after finishing an Andy Robertson ball
The Hibernian striker raises his hand to celebrate after bringing Steve Clarke’s side forward
Jack Hendry opened the score and shocked the Dutch with a nice right-footed attack from a distance
The 26-year-old defender drives off to celebrate with Stuart Armstrong after his goal
Netherlands (5-3-2): Curl; Dumfries, Timber (Berghuis 69), de Vrij (de Jong 85), de Ligt, Wijndal (van Aanholt 69); Wijnaldum (Gravenberch 31), de Roon, de Jong (Klaassen 31); Weghorst (Promes 69), Depay
Subs not used: Bizot, Koopmeiners, Malen, Stekelenburg, van de Beek, Veltman
Scorer: Depay (17, 89)
Booked: De Ligt
Manager: Frank de Boer
Scotland (4-3-3): Gordon; Robertson (Taylor 69), Cooper (Gallagher 62), Hendry, Tierney (McKenna 69); Turnbull (Gilmour 81), McGregor, Armstrong; Christie, Forrest (Fraser 61), Dykes (Nisbet 61)
Subs not used: McLaughlin, McTominay
Scorer: Hendry (11), Nisbet (64)
Manager: Steve Clarke
But after admitting that they had been in “close proximity” to Fleck, fears persist that more cases could emerge.
Concerns are heightened as goalkeeper David Marshall, defenders Grant Hanley and Stephen O’Donnell, midfielder John McGinn and striker Che Adams are likely to be starters for their first Euro 2020 game each week on Monday.
They have all tested negative in the past 48 hours, but Clarke will nonetheless be sweating for their well-being. At least on the pitch he saw enough to be encouraged, including the late debut of Chelsea’s Billy Gilmour.
The Netherlands quickly shot back when Memphis Depay equalized with a strong lock
Former Man United star Depay celebrates with Dutch captain Georginio Wijnaldum
The Lyon star stepped down in the final moments of the game to equalize for the Netherlands
Dutch star Depay points fingers at the sky after a draw for Frank de Boer’s side
“With what’s happened in the past few days, you learn to take day by day, but it was a good night for us,” Clarke said.
Scotland started as this was basically their Group D opener against the Czech Republic and it was no surprise when they led 10 minutes.
Southampton’s Stuart Armstrong and Celtic defender Jack Hendry ambushed a pair of orange jerseys in midfield and the latter hit his first international goal into the bottom corner from 20 yards.
So much for Clarke, a conservative coach, that the attack had started with a shot from Hendry’s fellow center back Kieran Tierney.
Armstrong looks horrified after appeals for foul in first half of action in Portugal
Vitor Jorge Fernandes Ferreira waves a yellow card to Juventus’ Matthijs de Ligt
Frank de Boer will be far from convinced after his side just about saved a draw in Portugal
Holland soon equalized when Memphis Depay came in from a muffled header by Georginio Wijnaldum.
But Scotland’s attacking overload always seemed like forcing a second and skipper Andy Robertson fired over the goal for substitute Kevin Nisbet to give in on 62 minutes.
They were denied the win when Depay scored a late free kick, but Clarke should have little to worry about after a mighty impressive night.
His concerns are off the field.