Steve Clarke’s dire and miserable Scotland ripped apart yet again

Steve Clarke’s dire and miserable Scotland ripped apart yet again
LARNACA, CYPRUS - SEPTEMBER 08: Stephen Clarke, Head Coach of Scotland looks on prior to the UEFA EURO 2024 European qualifier match between Cyprus and Scotland at AEK Arena on September 08, 2023 in Larnaca, Cyprus. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)

Suddenly Scotland are pretty horrible again, aren’t they?

After the media and non-Rangers fans decided to slaughter John Souttar for an error as an in-from-the-cold cameo, amid yet another shocker of a defeat to a modest Netherlands, it’s pretty clear Steve Clarke will flub his lines at another major championship and go for damage limitation in Germany like he did at Euro 2020.

That group 3 years ago saw Scotland face England, Croatia and Czechia, only managing a single point under a very very negative Clarke system.

And with four losses and two draws in their last 6 matches, it’s clear this Scotland can’t make the step up to big results with all 6 recent ones having been against decent-to-good sides.

For all the talk about a strong midfield, Clarke, just like Southgate, is a cliquey SOB, and picks and sticks with the same players no matter who is playing well and who isn’t.

And while few can deny Scotland have obviously made strides under him, the step up eludes him.

Because he can’t (or won’t) take Scotland up a notch.

Is this all bitterness from a Rangers site because our club is so unused by the national team? Not really, there were three Rangers men in the XI last night, Shankland, Gilmour and Patterson, so we’re not actually bothered by Clarke’s own biases even if he’d pick LB Tierney over Souttar as a starter.

The fact is he has the resources at hand to actually make Scotland a good team, but results of the past 6 matches suggest a lot of steps back.

The irony is the group Scotland have this summer is much much easier than the last Euros – Germany, Hungary and Switzerland. Any two of these four can go through.

But taking the step from the borderline friendlies that are the Nations League up to actually competing properly at a major championship is a different kettle of fish, and one we don’t see Clarke managing.

We’d imagine the same negative group performance, the same results, and probably his resignation at the end of it.

And whoever replaces him will probably still hate Rangers…

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