‘Struggling Scotland will get again on horse’

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Artem Dovbyk scores
Artem Dovbyk’s injury-time aim made it 3-1 to the superior guests at Hampden

Scotland should “endure collectively”, says head coach Steve Clarke, after a spirited Ukraine ended their hopes of reaching the World Cup in Qatar.

Regardless of their nation being at conflict with Russia and a few of their squad having not performed competitively for months, the guests earned a deserved 3-1 win.

It means Scotland’s 24-year wait to achieve a males’s World Cup finals goes on.

“I am struggling, my teaching employees are struggling,” stated Clarke. “And greater than anybody, the gamers are struggling.

“We’ll have 24 hours the place we’ll really feel sorry for ourselves. We’ll analyse the sport as a training employees and group of gamers. We’ll attempt to get again on the horse and go once more.”

Scotland have been favourites coming into the semi-final, which was delayed from March attributable to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

However for all their damaged preparation, Oleksandr Petrakov’s males have been the higher crew and earned their victory by means of objectives from Andriy Yarmolenko, Roman Yaremchuk and Artem Dovbyk.

Callum McGregor did pull the competition again to 2-1 with 10 minutes to play, however Dovbyk’s aim made positive Ukraine deservedly booked a play-off last spot in Wales on Sunday.

“The very best crew gained. It is disappointing for us however typically the opposition play higher than you and that was the case tonight,” stated Clarke.

“Within the first half, what I noticed was we did not play sufficient by means of the midfield. I used to be attempting to get Billy [Gilmour] and Callum [McGregor] on the ball extra so we may make passes.

“The concept was nonetheless to play by means of the strains and get one of many strikers on the ball in that place. Generally it’s a must to credit score the opposition and tonight Ukraine have been crew.”

Clarke has been in command of the Scotland for 3 years, with the spotlight of his tenure coming final summer time when he guided the nation to the European Championships, the place they went out on the group stage.

With that raised expectation, the ache of lacking out on Qatar later this yr will enhance additional. Nonetheless, the Scotland supervisor stated it “should not be forgotten” what progress the nationwide aspect has made.

“It is a group that has developed collectively,” he stated. “We now have to qualify for Euro 2024 and past that. By World Cup 2026, this group of gamers can have extra caps, extra expertise and ought to be higher. That is what we have now to purpose to be.

“I’ve had some low moments. After I first got here in, there have been some very low moments. We have left these days behind I feel, I actually do. We have improved rather a lot.

“I am unhappy for the plyers as a result of we wished to go to the World Cup collectively. We will not really feel too sorry for ourselves. We’re a piece in progress. Hopefully they do not make me out to be a liar and they’ll qualify for an additional event.”



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