Adams Key for Clarke’s Scotland at Hampden

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Scotland will be hoping to enjoy a winning start back on the big stage

Scotland will be hoping to celebrate at Hamapden Park.

It’s been 23 years in the waiting, but Scotland finally return to tournament football on Monday when they kick off their Euro 2020 campaign.

Steve Clarke’s men are not just content though on making it to the finals, they want to create history and reach the knockout stages for the first time.

To do that, they are likely to have to beat the Czech Republic in their opener, in which they will be roared on by 12,000 fans at Hampden Park.

Confidence High After Impressive Run

Scotland, who are 10/11 to qualify for the knockout stages, go into their Group D opener having lost just twice in 16 matches and unbeaten in their last five.

Clarke and his squad should also be buoyed by their head-to-head record against the Czechs, with the Tartan Army unbeaten in their last four meetings (three wins and one draw).

Hampden Park will also be a significant factor in Scotland’s hopes, as they go into this opener unbeaten in eight games on home soil and are available at 7/4 to collect the three points.

Czechs Bank on Schick for Goals

The visitors head to Glasgow with a form line that doesn’t instil much confidence for those that may have backed them to progress past the group, with just four wins in their last nine internationals.

But they are a better side than those results suggest, highlighted by their win over England in qualifying for the European Championships.

Premier League fans will be well aware of West Ham duo Tomas Soucek and Vladimir Coufal, while former Chelsea centre-back Tomas Kalas plays his football in the Championship with Bristol City.

Striker Patrick Schick is the dangerman though, with big experience in two of the biggest leagues in Europe. Following spells in Italy with Sampdoria and Roma, the 25-year-old has spent the last two seasons in Germany.

Schick has scored 19 goals in two seasons in the Bundesliga, with RB Leipzig and Bayer Leverkusen and is 14/5 to score at anytime on Monday.

Adams Offers Much-Needed Threat

For almost a decade, Scotland have been missing a prolific striker who provides a threat up top, but they may now have found that missing piece of the jigsaw.

Che Adams only made his debut for the Scots in March but, having made an impact in the Premier League with Southampton, he’s already got two goals to his name.

The 24-year-old has pace in abundance and offers a different outlet for Clarke, with the former Birmingham and Sheffield United man available at 13/2 to score the first goal on Monday.

If Scotland are to be successful in qualifying from Group D, they will have to defend well and continue that stubbornness they have shown in recent times.

Clarke’s men have kept clean sheets in five of their last eight home games and one of those came in a 1-0 Nations League win over Czech Republic in October.

A repeat scoreline on Monday can be backed at 19/4.

*All odds correct at time of writing

Warren has been employed as a sport journalist for over two decades and as well as years of written experience, has also worked in other areas of the media including radio and television. Football has always been his number one passion, but has also commentated and written on a number of other sports including golf, cricket, tennis and rugby.

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