‘Scotland are having a party and Haaland’s in his bed!’: Tartan Army enjoy their big night as they celebrate Euro 2024 qualification amid thrilling 3-3 draw with Norway
- Scotland fans enjoyed their final Euro 2024 qualifier despite Norway’s equaliser
- This was the first chance for Scotland supporters to properly cheer qualification
- Chris Sutton is stunned by Ian Ladyman’s England Euro XI: It’s All Kicking Off
‘Scotland are having a party and Haaland’s in his bed,’ sang the Tartan Army. And not even a late Norwegian leveller could stop those supporters from celebrating long into Sunday night.
After Scotland’s qualification for Euro 2024 was confirmed via a Spain win in Oslo last month, this was the fans’ first chance to pay homage to their heroes at Hampden.
And while Steve Clarke was ‘fuming’ his players could not sign off a memorable campaign with a win, it mattered little to those who will be booking their flights to Germany after the draw on December 2.
Scotland will be among the third pot of seeds when the balls are pulled out in Hamburg, having finished second to Spain in Group A.
After victories in their first five qualifying games, this draw actually meant they went winless in their final three.
Scotland supporters enjoyed the occasion as their team drew 3-3 at home to Norway
Scotland players applauded the fans at the end of a successful Euro 2024 qualifying campaign
Steve Clarke was eager for Scotland to sign off with a victory but they fell just short
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Yet such stats were far from the players’ thoughts as they lapped up the adulation of their adoring public in a post-match lap of honour, dressed in ‘We’re off to Germany’ t-shirts.
‘It was nice at the end,’ admitted boss Clarke. ‘It was nice for the supporters to say thank you to the team, and it was nice for the staff and team to say thank to you to supporters.
‘I didn’t smile too much because I was still fuming about the third goal that we conceded. That’s just the way I’m made up.
‘We played the first half like a testimonial, like, “Look at us, we’re a great team, we’ve qualified for Germany”. But it’s not a night to over-analyse. Overall, it is fantastic to qualify in the manner we did.’
When Clarke took charge of his first match against Cyprus in June 2019, only 30,000 fans turned up here at Hampden.
But the Scotland boss has made fans fall back in love with their football team. And this was a seventh straight sell-out, with supporters holding up cards to create a giant message of ‘We’ll be coming’ as the teams walked out.
One team who won’t be going to Germany is Norway, who were out of contention for the play-offs even before Sunday night.
Yet despite missing injured superstars Erling Haaland and Martin Odegaard, they opened the scoring after only three minutes, when Aron Donnum curled in off the left post.
Scotland levelled 10 minutes later through stand-in skipper John McGinn’s coolly-taken penalty after Callum McGregor’s shot was blocked by the hand of goalscorer Donnum.
But Norway regained the lead in the 20th-minute as Jorgen Strand Larsen bundled the ball past Scotland keeper Zander Clark – on his home debut – from Julian Ryerson’s deflected cross.
Scotland players celebrate after Stuart Armstrong’s goal put them ahead against Norway
The Scotland players will now look forward to their involvement in next year’s tournament
The hosts were back on terms through Leo Ostigard’s 33-minute own goal after Kenny McLean had touched on Scott McTominay’s corner.
And they got their noses in front for the first time 14 minutes after the restart, as McGinn pulled back to Armstrong, whose fine finish found the bottom left corner through a bundle of bodies.
There was to be one final twist, as Mohamed Elyounoussi headed in for Norway four minutes from time.
But the Scotland supporters did not really care. They were having a party – and Haaland was in his bed.
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