Scotland made it eight video games unbeaten – their greatest run in 32 years – as they resisted intense second-half strain for a hard-fought Nations League win over the Czech Republic at Hampden.
Ryan Fraser’s sixth-minute end gave the hosts a lead they clung on to.
Steve Clarke’s males defended resolutely – and had been grateful for an unimaginable Tomas Soucek miss – to go 4 factors clear on the prime of Group B.
Their subsequent task is the Euro 2020 play-off closing in Serbia subsequent month.
Fraser twice threatened a second earlier than the break, and substitute Oli McBurnie smacked the crossbar late on.
However Scotland rode their luck amid a Czech onslaught to safe a 3rd consecutive clear sheet and match the eight-game undefeated streak of Andy Roxburgh’s facet of 1987-88.
The makeshift Czech facet overwhelmed at residence by Scotland final month had been stood down, and the standard of the returning regulars was clear.
It was Scotland, although, who made the early breakthrough in an entertaining first half. Stephen O’Donnell harried Lukas Provod out of possession on the appropriate, then shifted the ball to Lyndon Dykes.
The striker gave his marker the slip then performed in Fraser to slip a low end previous Tomas Vaclik for his second Scotland aim.
The bedrock of Scotland’s revival below Clarke has been their defence, and it was examined to breaking level in probably the most tough recreation of their tremendous latest run.
Burnley striker Matej Vydra missed two evident possibilities for the Czechs in every half, blazing huge on the again publish then firing throughout aim from a decent angle.
There was an extra let-off for Scotland when defender Andrew Considine’s penalty-box shirt pull on Soucek went unpunished.
Clarke’s facet carried a risk of their very own earlier than half-time. Fraser curled an effort narrowly previous the publish earlier than a terrific counter-attack despatched him scampering clear to lash one simply too excessive.
The second half, although, was all about survival. The Czech possibilities piled up as David Marshall saved a Vydra flick, Soucek nodded huge, and John McGinn made a goal-saving intervention as he nicked the ball off the toe of Alex Kral.
There was a debut for Hibernian defender Paul Hanlon as Scotland battened down the hatches.
And when the ball dropped to Soucek three yards out with an empty web gaping, just for the West Ham midfielder to scoop the ball over, Scotland knew it was their evening.
Man of the match – Ryan Fraser
What did we be taught?
Clarke could have struck gold with the unorthodox little-and-large pairing of Dykes and Fraser up entrance. Fraser, an impish winger by commerce, supplies the tempo to enhance Dykes’ physicality.
They linked properly, as evidenced by the aim, of their second successive begin collectively and now look Clarke’s most well-liked ahead line for the seismic showdown in Serbia.
Scotland head into that tie on a wave of momentum and confidence that has followers believing the 23-year absence from main finals can lastly be consigned to historical past. The spirit and unity of Clarke’s group shone via as they doggedly refused to just accept the rest than victory.
- Scotland have gone eight video games unbeaten (W6 D2), after dropping their earlier 4.
- They’ve overwhelmed the Czechs within the final three conferences of the perimeters.
- Scotland have registered three consecutive clear sheets for the primary time since October 2017.
- Lyndon Dykes has been straight concerned in seven targets in his final 11 video games for membership and nation (6 targets, 1 help).
- Ryan Fraser has been straight concerned in six targets in his final eight begins for Scotland (two targets, 4 assists).
The large one – Scotland head to Belgrade on 12 November for a one-off play-off in opposition to Serbia to determine which facet goes via to the Euro 2020 finals subsequent summer time.
- 1MarshallBooked at 81mins
- 18TaylorSubstituted forHanlonat 79′minutes
- 7McGinnSubstituted forPatersonat 79′minutes
- 9DykesBooked at 51minsSubstituted forMcBurnieat 65′minutes
- 17FraserSubstituted forMcLeanat 70′minutes
- 3CelustkaSubstituted forHovorkaat 20′minutes
- 18BorilBooked at 42mins
- 21KralSubstituted forKaderábekat 77′minutes
- 12MasopustSubstituted forPoznarat 66′minutes
- 10ProvodSubstituted forSevcikat 65′minutes
- 20VydraSubstituted forRabusicat 77′minutes
Dwell Textual content
Match ends, Scotland 1, Czech Republic 0.
Second Half ends, Scotland 1, Czech Republic 0.
Try blocked. Michael Rabusic (Czech Republic) proper footed shot from exterior the field is blocked. Assisted by Petr Sevcik.
Nook, Czech Republic. Conceded by David Marshall.
Try saved. Jan Boril (Czech Republic) proper footed shot from exterior the field is saved within the prime centre of the aim. Assisted by Vladimír Darida.
Hand ball by Vladimir Coufal (Czech Republic).
Nook, Czech Republic. Conceded by Kenny McLean.
Nook, Czech Republic. Conceded by Andrew Considine.
Oliver McBurnie (Scotland) hits the bar with a proper footed shot from exterior the field. Assisted by Callum Paterson.
Foul by Michael Rabusic (Czech Republic).
Paul Hanlon (Scotland) wins a free kick within the defensive half.
Try missed. Tomas Soucek (Czech Republic) proper footed shot from very shut vary is only a bit too excessive.
Jan Boril (Czech Republic) wins a free kick within the defensive half.
Foul by Declan Gallagher (Scotland).
David Marshall (Scotland) is proven the yellow card.
Foul by Tomás Poznar (Czech Republic).
Scott McTominay (Scotland) wins a free kick within the defensive half.
Substitution, Scotland. Callum Paterson replaces John McGinn.
Substitution, Scotland. Paul Hanlon replaces Greg Taylor.
Substitution, Czech Republic. Michael Rabusic replaces Matej Vydra.