Gordon, Souttar miss out on Scotland Euros squad as Morgan, Conway in


Goalkeeper Craig Gordon and defender John Souttar have been left out of Scotland’s final squad for Euro 2024.

Head coach Steve Clarke had named four goalkeepers and seven centre-backs in his provisional 28-man squad – meaning the two players who he would drop would likely come from those areas.

Euro 2024: Scotland’s final squad

  • Goalkeepers: Zander Clark (Hearts), Angus Gunn (Norwich), Liam Kelly (Motherwell)
  • Defenders: Liam Cooper (Leeds United), Grant Hanley (Norwich), Jack Hendry (Al-Ettifaq), Ross McCrorie (Bristol City), Scott McKenna (Copenhagen), Ryan Porteous (Watford), Anthony Ralston (Celtic), Andy Robertson (Liverpool), Greg Taylor (Celtic), Kieran Tierney (Real Sociedad)
  • Midfielders: Stuart Armstrong (Southampton), Ryan Christie (Bournemouth), Billy Gilmour (Brighton), Ryan Jack (free agent), Kenny McLean (Norwich), John McGinn (Aston Villa), Callum McGregor (Celtic), Scott McTominay (Manchester United)
  • Forwards: Che Adams (Southampton), Tommy Conway (Bristol City), James Forrest (Celtic), Lewis Morgan (New York Red Bulls), Lawrence Shankland (Hearts)

While Gordon was the highest-capped player in the initial group – he had made just seven club appearances this season after recovering from a double-leg break suffered in December 2022. It means his Hearts team-mate Zander Clark and Motherwell’s Liam Kelly – who featured in every league game – will join No 1 Angus Gunn on the plane to Germany.

In defence – with Grant Hanley back after his injury issues and Liam Cooper fit despite his precautionary substitution against Gibraltar, Souttar misses out following his own fitness woes – with the defender missing Rangers’ last three games of the season.

The duo will be joined by Jack Hendry, Ryan Porteous, Scott McKenna, Andy Robertson, Greg Taylor and Kieran Tierney in the squad, plus Ross McCrorie and Anthony Ralston, who are Clarke’s right-back options.

The inclusion of Ralston and McCrorie come after first-choice Aaron Hickey and back-up Nathan Patterson were ruled out in the build-up, as was Bologna midfielder Lewis Ferguson.

Stuart Armstrong had not played for Southampton since April and the midfielder didn’t train with the Scotland squad this week – but Clarke has included him in his final 26 with the hope he rejoins the group on the opening week of the Euros.

Now free-agent Ryan Jack is also in – with his 17-minute substitute appearance against Gibraltar his first action since March, while Ryan Christie, Billy Gilmour, Kenny McLean, John McGinn, Callum McGregor and Scott McTominay make the cut as expected.

Forwards Lyndon Dykes – who had played in every qualifier – and uncapped Liverpool youngster Ben Doak withdrew from the wider squad through injury.

However, the duo have been replaced in the final group by Tommy Conway of Bristol City who scored 10 league goals during the campaign, and New York Red Bulls forward Lewis Morgan, who prior to Friday’s draw with Finland was last capped in 2018.

New York Red Bulls midfielder Lewis Morgan (9) during an MLS soccer match against the Chicago Fire, Saturday, April 13, 2024 in Harrison, N.J. (AP Photo/Vera Nieuwenhuis)
Image:
Lewis Morgan – who has scored nine goals in 16 games in the MLS this season – was a late addition to the squad

Che Adams and Lawrence Shankland are Clarke’s other forward options, while Celtic’s James Forrest will provide width after making the final squad.

Clarke’s ’emotional’ converstations

John Souttar (left) and Craig Gordon are not in Scotland's final Euro 2024 squad while Tommy Conway (right) makes the cut
Image:
Souttar (left) and Gordon are not in Scotland’s final Euro 2024 squad while Tommy Conway (right) makes the cut

Steve Clarke admitted it was difficult to tell Craig Gordon his decision:

“I like a balanced squad, I’ve picked a balanced squad. I wasn’t going to take four goalkeepers.

“It was a really tough decision to leave Craig out. When you think of the injury he’s come back from, I just felt over the period of time he’d been back, he hadn’t become the No 1 at Hearts again. Only seven games from December 2022 is a long time.

“The three goalkeepers had been involved in every qualification match. It was a really tough conversation with Craig, quite emotional to be honest for both of us. The mark of the man is that he’s here tonight.

“At the end of the conversation I said: ‘I understand if you don’t like me and don’t want to do this, but I would like to give you your 75th cap at Hampden in front of a good crowd’.

“He was there and within one hour of the news he was down having dinner with the lads and the meetings. A great professional.

“At the end of the game, we gave him a little reward signed by all the lads with Gordon 75 on the back of his jersey. As I was giving it to him I said, ‘I know Craig will throw this back in my face and say 76, 77, 78, 79 and 80 are coming’. That’s what Craig’s like.”

John Souttar will miss Scotland's Euro 2024 campaign
Image:
John Souttar will miss Scotland’s Euro 2024 campaign

On John Souttar he added: “Also emotional. It’s really difficult for you people to imagine sitting down with people who have always given their best for their country when I’ve selected them.

“To get so close to the margin, the conversations were done face-to-face. Last time with Covid those types of conversations were done over the telephone.

“I’m pleased that I made the decision to bring a slightly bigger squad because we’ve had one or two issues. It means I get the chance to look the boys in the eye and so do they.

“I think they understand how difficult it is for me and I really understand how difficult it is for them. Very professional, both guys.”

‘We’re in a good place’

Clarke believes Scotland’s preparation can serve them well in Germany.

He said: “I’m delighted. The team’s in a good place. We know what we have within our group.

“The build-up games and the difficult friendlies, we picked them so the players understand how difficult it is against top teams and how good they’re going to have to be in this tournament.”

Scotland’s Euro 2024 schedule

Scotland have history kicking off tournaments, having been drawn to face Brazil in the opener at World Cup 1998, a game they narrowly lost 2-1 to a second-half Tom Boyd own goal.

This time around the venue is the Munich Football Arena (Allianz Arena) where Steve Clarke’s kick-off the opening match of Euro 2024 against hosts Germany on June 14.

The Scots also face games against perennial qualifiers Switzerland in Cologne on June 19, with Hungary – who reached the knockouts in 2016 – awaiting in Stuttgart on June 23.

Scotland’s potential route to the final finishing as group winners…

If Scotland finish as winners of Group A but all other results at Euro 2024 go with the world rankings, the Scots’ opponents in the knockout rounds would be…

Round of 16: Saturday June 29 – Scotland vs Denmark (Westfalenstadion, Dortmund)

Quarter-final: Friday July 5 – Spain vs Scotland (MHPArena, Stuttgart)

Semi-final: Tuesday July 9 – Scotland vs Netherlands; kick-off 8pm (Allianz Arena, Munich)

Final: Sunday July 14 – Scotland vs France; kick-off 8pm (Olympiastadion, Berlin)

Scotland’s potential route to the final finishing as group runners-up…

If Scotland finish as Group A runners-up but all other results at Euro 2024 go with the world rankings, the Scots’ opponents in the knockout rounds would be…

Round of 16: Saturday June 29 – Scotland vs Italy (Olympiastadion, Berlin)

Quarter-final: Saturday July 6 – England vs Scotland (Merkur Spiel-Arena, Düsseldorf)

Semi-final: Wednesday July 10 – France vs Scotland; kick-off 8pm (Allianz Arena, Munich)

Final: Sunday July 14 – Spain vs Scotland; kick-off 8pm (Olympiastadion, Berlin)

If Scotland finish as one of four best third-placed teams…

One of:

Sunday June 30 – Group B winners vs third-placed side from Group A/D/E/F (RheinEnergieStadion, Cologne)

Monday July 1 – Group F winners vs third-placed side from Group A/B/C (Waldstadion, Frankfurt)

Tuesday July 2: Group E winners vs third-placed side Group A/B/C/D (Allianz Arena, Munich)Quarter-finals

If Scotland finish first in Group A and win round of 16 game…

Friday July 5 (MHPArena, Stuttgart)

If Scotland finish second in Group A and win round of 16 game…

Saturday July 6 (Merkur Spiel-Arena, Dusseldorf)

If Scotland finish as one of four best third-placed teams and win round of 16 game…

One of:

Friday July 5 (MHPArena, Stuttgart)

Friday July 5 (Volksparkstadion, Hamburg)

Saturday July 6 – (Olympiastadion, Berlin)

Semi-finals

If Scotland finish first in Group A, win round of 16 game and win quarter-final…

Tuesday July 9 – kick-off 8pm (Allianz Arena, Munich)

If Scotland finish second in Group A, win round of 16 game and win quarter-final…

Wednesday July 10 – kick-off 8pm (Westfalenstadion, Dortmund)

If Scotland finish as one of four best third-placed teams, win round of 16 game and win quarter-final…

One of:

Tuesday July 9 – kick-off 8pm (Allianz Arena, Munich)

Wednesday July 10 – kick-off 8pm (Westfalenstadion, Dortmund)

And finally, the final…

Sunday July 14 – kick-off 8pm (Olympiastadion, Berlin)

Get Sky Sports on WhatsApp!

You can now start receiving messages and alerts for the latest breaking sports news, analysis, in-depth features and videos from our dedicated WhatsApp channel!

Find out more here…



Source link

About The Author

Scroll to Top