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Euros: Humbled Scotland 8/11 to qualify for knockout stages in Germany

Steve Clarke's side are now winless in six as their wastefulness in front of goal was compounded by a late collapse at the Johan Cruyff Arena in Amsterdam on Friday night.

Scotland, who are 8/11 to progress through Group A this summer, were hugely impressive in the manner in which they secured themselves of a spot at the forthcoming summer showpiece, but were handed a harsh lesson of what it takes to compete with the elite in their latest international outing.

There's no doubting the fact that the Scots were able to match their more illustrious Dutch opponents for long periods, but their misdemeanours in front of goal, together with an unforeseen late capitulation, will leave Clarke and their army of supporters with huge cause for concern as the days and weeks tick down towards the start of the European Championships.

Only Tijiani Reijnders' sensational first-half strike separated the two sides with just 20 minutes of the clash remaining.

However, everybody of a Scottish persuasion soon had their heads in their hands as their nation let grip of their stranglehold on the game by shipping three cheap late goals to flip the narrative on what had, up to then, been a hugely positive performance.

The former West Bromwich Albion and Kilmarnock boss has now seen his side concede 18 goals in a six match winless run, and with just three friendly fixtures left to address his leaky backline ahead of the 2024 opener against host nation Germany, who they are 9/1 to beat, he knows that time is running out to address his side's issues.

The very fact that Dutch stopper Mark Flekken was named as his side's man of the match tells you the story of the game, but still, Scotland's frontline should have done better with at least two or three of the gilt-edged opportunities they worked so hard for.

More worryingly however, will surely be the manner in which Scotland collapsed during the final throws of the encounter!

The Netherlands has never been a happy hunting ground for Scotland, but there was genuine hope that the side could address their previous disappointments this time around.

And for long periods, they were backing up those pre-match hopes with a performance of confidence and swagger, but after making a late triple substitution, welcoming John Souttar, Lewis Ferguson and Che Adams to the fray, Clarke cut a helpless figure on the sidelines as things to a major turn for the worse.

It will be down to the 60-year-old and his backroom team to fine-tune preparations in the upcoming friendlies against Northern Ireland, Gibraltar and Finland, where there will need to be significant improvements made to lift the hopes of a nation who were not so long ago salivating at the thought of Germany on matchday one.

Only England (10/3) and France (7/2) are a shorter price than the Germans (13/2) to go the full distance and capture the coveted European Championship crown in July, and whilst the Scots will fancy their chances against Switzerland and Hungary in Group A, the even-money on offer for the nation to miss out on qualification will begin to look a good bet if their defensive frailties are not rectified.

Check out our betting hubs for the latest Euros winner betting odds.

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