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Scotland Need To Freshen Things Up Tactically

Date: 2nd September 2021

I am not really one for knee jerk reactions. 

As I watched Scotland lose two early goals to Denmark last night, I knew social media would be awash with fans that would question national team coach Steve Clarke. That is there right, the manager isn’t above criticism just because he took us back to a major final. 

That being said, I think too many underestimated the task in hand or forgot who we were up against. Denmark are far and away the best team in our group. They had a very good showing at the Euros, getting to the semi-final stage. In 2020-21 they’ve recorded victories against Austria, England, The Czech Republic and Russia.

Most of us before the fixture kicked off said we’d be delighted to get anything from Copenhagen, yet when we didn’t we still moaned about it. The manner in which we lost those early goals was disheartening, especially the first, but we were up against a very good outfit. 

Plus we were missing significant players due to Covid and injury. We didn’t have a recognised right-back, we missed John McGinn’s forward runs and Scott McTominay has proven himself to be vital in the past. I also don’t think people realise just what Ryan Jack gives to the team, he’s the main midfielder we have in our pool that can close the opposition down and get tackles in. 

Yet although I don’t personally have any real issues with Steve Clarke as our gaffer, I do think the time has come for a rejig in terms of formation and tactics. 

In the 3-5-2 formation, we defend too deep and when we do break forward we then squander chances. In 2o21, Scotland have played in six matches (using three at the back in all of them) and have only secured one victory. 

Personally I’d want to see us playing a 4-4-2 or 4-3-3 against Moldova on Saturday. Let’s see if our personnel can be more creative and go on the front foot in one of those formations. 

I also feel we have to be hungrier in winning the ball back and getting into the faces of the opposition. One thing Clarke has never fixed since becoming Scotland boss has been our willingness to engage further up the field and it has cost us plenty of times with deep crosses into box or with shots coming in from distance. 

Our upcoming games against Moldova and Austria this month are now pretty much must wins, we certainly cant’t come away with less than four points in my opinion, 

It’s time that we show a bit more belief in our own game and go on the attack earlier in games. We can’t afford to only turn up when we need to start chasing games. 

I don’t want major changes to the structure of our squad or to the management team, just a few tactically tweaks that can hopefully get us back on track! 

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