Archive for the Euro 2008 Category

Scotland v Argentina tickets available from 8 October

Posted in Euro 2008, Friendlies, World Cup 2010 with tags , on October 8, 2008 by Tartan Army Soldier

Tickets for the Scotland v Argentine friendly at Hampden on 19 November are on sale to Scotland Supporters Club members from 9am on 8th October. Tickets are available via www.ticketlink.co.uk/sscticketing and cost £25 – £35.

Argentina national team

Argentina national team

I have to admit I am quite apathetic about this match. It’s unlikely I’ll go. Argentina are not the team the used to be, being ranked 7th in the world. This compares to their historical, almost guaranteed top 2 placing. So can we expect to see an outstanding match? With the South Americans heading south in the rankings I can only assume they are not the unstoppable machine they used to be.

Maybe I am being too negative. 7th in the World is not exactly poor. However I am also unsure how helpful it will be for Scotland to go up against a South American team. Our main concern has to be qualification for the World Cup. In recent years we are finding it difficult to qualify for that and Euro championships. With this in mind, perhaps Scotland need to face some East European teams as they seem to a significant barrier to qualification, e.g. if Scotland had won in Georgia like every other team in our Euro 2008 group, bar the Faroe Isles, we would have all been visiting Austria/Switzerland. Then, when we are good enough to ensure qualification, we can start thinking about facing non-European opposition.

I’ll definatley be watching. Whether its the Rob Roy or Famous 3 Kings we’ll be there watching for Miller, McFadden and co, hopefully showing the Argentines a goal or two.

Holland beaten 3-1 by Russia in Euro 2008. Good result for Scotland?

Posted in Euro 2008, Uncategorized, World Cup 2010 with tags , on June 22, 2008 by Tartan Army Soldier

Holland were looking unstoppable. Winning their way to the Euro 2008 quarter finals in ultimate style, it seemed they were the team most likely lift trophy on June 29. Russia, however, had other ideas. Winning 3-1 in extra time the Russians have ejected the Dutch and progressed to the semi-finals. Unfortunately for Holland, but possibly good for Scotland.

Could this upset give Scotland an edge in the World Cup 2010 qualifiers? Not to underestimate the Holland side, but going up against the Euro 2008 quarter finalists will be a lot less daunting than had the Dutch progressed further.

Holland demolish France in 4-1 Euro 2008 spectacular

Posted in Euro 2008, World Cup 2010 with tags , on June 14, 2008 by Tartan Army Soldier

Can anyone stop the Dutch. Group C was always going to be of interest to Scotland fans – including past opponents France and Italy and future World Cup 2010 nemesis Holland. Yesterday was Holland v France. Holland’s display was outstanding!

The Dutch always play well. However it already looks like they could be top favourites to take home trophy. After only 9 minutes they were ahead of the French. And it never looked like they were going to lose. Even when Henry beat Van der Sar the Dutch were back all over France and punching home another goal within the next minute.

I’m supporting the Dutch, but I’m beginning to hope they show some weakness that the Scotland squald can explot in the future. Otherwise, we’re going to need to sort out some miracle to stop Van Basten’s men.

Holland 3-0 Italy – Scotland’s past and future opposition clash in Euro 2008

Posted in Euro 2008, World Cup 2010 with tags , , , on June 10, 2008 by Tartan Army Soldier

I’ve not long finished watching the Holland v Italy game. And what a corker it was – total quality football.

I have to admit I was rooting for the Dutch. After the questionable defeat of Scotland at Hampden last November I have not been a huge fan of the Italian team. Watching them go down 3-0 was somewhat pleasing. More interesting perhaps (and worrying) was that the Dutch played so well.

Dutch fans

The Dutch are Scotland’s biggest threat for World Cup 2010 qualification. And after last night’s performance we really need to be wary of them. Having beat France in Paris, we are not about surrender before the occasion, but the Scotland squad really have their work cut out.

Meanwhile, I will be backing the Marco van Basten’s men to win. ‘On the Dutch!

Alex McLeish resigns as Scotland Coach

Posted in Alex McLeish, Euro 2008, Scotland Squad on November 27, 2007 by Tartan Army Soldier

It wasn’t the biggest shock in the world, but Alex McLeish has resigned from the position of Scotland boss. He’s leaving to join Birmingham City.

Alex McLeish

McLeish will be missed. He did a fine job, helping improve Scotland’s world ranking to its highest level for a very long time. Taking over from Walter Smith in January, McLeish continued his predecessor’s lead of the Scotland Euro 2008 campaign. Despite failure to qulaify for the next stage, Scotland showed an improved standard of football that deservedly earned them a second seed position in the recent World Cup 2010 qualifying draw.

As has been reported McLeish’s wage has quadrupled. I wish he had refused the extra money, or more realistically, the SFA had matched it. Unfortunately that did not happen. And I can’t really blame him for taking the money. Regardless, ‘Big Eck’ will be very much missed.

Scotland robbed of Euro 2008 qualification?

Posted in Euro 2008, Uncategorized, World Cup 2010 on November 19, 2007 by Tartan Army Soldier

What a weekend! I’m gutted, but Scotland have done us proud.

Hampden Park, Saturday, 5.00 pm, after a few preparatory beers, we stood waiting for the teams to take the field. One way or another, Scotland’s Euro 2008 qualification was going to be decided. With a capacity crowd, 48,000+ Tartan Army footsoldiers were looking forward to a memorable Scotland victory.

It all started badly. No sooner was the game underway than our defence were under attack. And, after a mere 70 seconds Italy’s Luca Toni scored! Tragedy! And, despite Scotland efforts to equalise that was how the first half ended. I’m not sure what half-time entertainment they provided, but I’d lost any interest in anything but the match at hand and the dire situation that existed. Could Scotland turn it around?

Barry Ferguson scores for Scotland

The second half kicked off. Scotland were transformed. They seemed to have stepped up a gear and compared to the first half, this time Scotland were the more commanding team. Scotland had most of the possession and it seemed they were almost definitely destined to score. And they did. In the 65th minute Barry Ferguson fired the ball into the net to equal the result. Now Scotland had a chance! Could they finish the job?

Manuel Enrique Mejuto González - Man in need of an opticianScotland played magnificently. The continued to play the better football, firing the ball at the Italy goal numerous times. Unfortnately, the ball refused to go in the net. Then came the final tragedy and last insult of what had seemed, to me at least (and a few thousand others?), a catalogue to questionable decisions. Referee Manuel Enrique Mejuto González awarded Italy a free-kick, for what was blatantly an Italy offence (WTF!), and Christian Panucci converted it to give the Italians the victory they needed.

Manuel Enrique Mejuto González
Corrupt,
blind or just stupid?

We were gutted. Scotland had come so close. And to lose in such questionable circumstances was even worse. That said, Scotland are now a much more-respected side and no country is going to look on a clash with Scotland lightly. Plus we are now second seeds for the World Cup 2010 draw that is to take place later this month. We’re not going to Austria, but let’s get ready for a trip to South Africa in 3 years time!

Off to Hampden, In search of victory for Scotland

Posted in Euro 2008 on November 15, 2007 by Tartan Army Soldier

I’m off to Kings Cross in 10 minutes. Then on a train to Glasgow. Then, after my liver recovers on Friday, we’re (14 of us) off to Hampden.

Obviously we’re hoping to see a Scottish victory. With everything to play for I expect the Scotland team will be giving it all. I have faith they will do the necesary. Party-time on Saturday night beckons and will be a bucket of fun. See you all there.