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Underperforming


Diamond Scot
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Something was mentioned in another thread about forward players and how we used to qualify even without world class forwards that got me thinking.

In my opinion Scotland have always underperformed. I dont think comparing quaification now (possibly with the exception of the new Euros format) and qualification previously is fair.

From the 50s to the 90s European and World football was significantly weaker as a collective. Scotland as one of the 1st to play the game effectively had a head start. We used to reguarly beat the likes of France and the scandanavion countrys and it wasnt a shock.

With that in mind I think not qualifying out of the group stages of any tournament is equivilent to not reaching tournamants these days. Especially when you look at the world class players we had at the time. In addition the number of teams in Europe has grown significantly and the professionalism has reached or even surpassed our levels. With the exception of the very bottom teams there are no truly easy games anymore.

Id compare the state of womens football to how things were in the 60s to 90s in the mens game where there are a limited number of professional top countries, of which we are one with the gap to the rest being massive. Scores of 10 nil etc not being uncommon.

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1 hour ago, Diamond Scot said:

Something was mentioned in another thread about forward players and how we used to qualify even without world class forwards that got me thinking.

In my opinion Scotland have always underperformed. I dont think comparing quaification now (possibly with the exception of the new Euros format) and qualification previously is fair.

From the 50s to the 90s European and World football was significantly weaker as a collective. Scotland as one of the 1st to play the game effectively had a head start. We used to reguarly beat the likes of France and the scandanavion countrys and it wasnt a shock.

With that in mind I think not qualifying out of the group stages of any tournament is equivilent to not reaching tournamants these days. Especially when you look at the world class players we had at the time. In addition the number of teams in Europe has grown significantly and the professionalism has reached or even surpassed our levels. With the exception of the very bottom teams there are no truly easy games anymore.

Id compare the state of womens football to how things were in the 60s to 90s in the mens game where there are a limited number of professional top countries, of which we are one with the gap to the rest being massive. Scores of 10 nil etc not being uncommon.

I fully agree.

In the 1950s Scotland's qualifying group was the Home Championship. Into the 60s and 70s they would be in groups containing three teams such were the low number of teams competing. Into the 80s and teams that qualify now such as Iceland and Finland were regarded as whipping boys back then. They have improved immensely since then. The number of competing teams have increased with their quality improving all of the time. Now to qualify Scotland have to come through groups containing six teams with only the group winners qualifying whereas in the 80s and 90s second place would also see you qualify. In short there is just no comparison in quality and quantity of today compared to 30 to 40 years ago.

Obviously, we have had spells where players available to us was not of the quality/quantity needed for is to qualify. Also whereas we could attract the best managers in the game to manage us in form of Jock Stein the job in recent years has not attracted top notch candidates as league management appeals much more.

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I suppose also the fact that there’s simply more countries. Germany being the only exception.

Czechoslovak = 2

USSR = 11

Yugoslavia = 7

Gibraltar - Newbie

West Germany & East Germany = -1

20 additional countries, who all have taken a bite out of Scotland at some point, or at least made life difficult (Gibraltar accepted).

J

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1 hour ago, Diamond Scot said:

Something was mentioned in another thread about forward players and how we used to qualify even without world class forwards that got me thinking.

In my opinion Scotland have always underperformed. I dont think comparing quaification now (possibly with the exception of the new Euros format) and qualification previously is fair.

From the 50s to the 90s European and World football was significantly weaker as a collective. Scotland as one of the 1st to play the game effectively had a head start. We used to reguarly beat the likes of France and the scandanavion countrys and it wasnt a shock.

With that in mind I think not qualifying out of the group stages of any tournament is equivilent to not reaching tournamants these days. Especially when you look at the world class players we had at the time. In addition the number of teams in Europe has grown significantly and the professionalism has reached or even surpassed our levels. With the exception of the very bottom teams there are no truly easy games anymore.

Id compare the state of womens football to how things were in the 60s to 90s in the mens game where there are a limited number of professional top countries, of which we are one with the gap to the rest being massive. Scores of 10 nil etc not being uncommon.

Went into this quite deep in one thread with caledonian craig. Personally i think there isnt a huge difference in difficulty qualifying for tournaments these days compared with the past as the tournaments used to have only 16 (world cup) or 8(euros) teams. Fair enough the standard of certain countries has risen but its probably evened out by the fact more teams qualify. Saying that i never grew up during the 60s,70s and 80s so maybe some of the older members might have a better idea.

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23 minutes ago, Caledonian Craig said:

I fully agree.

In the 1950s Scotland's qualifying group was the Home Championship. Into the 60s and 70s they would be in groups containing three teams such were the low number of teams competing. Into the 80s and teams that qualify now such as Iceland and Finland were regarded as whipping boys back then. They have improved immensely since then. The number of competing teams have increased with their quality improving all of the time. Now to qualify Scotland have to come through groups containing six teams with only the group winners qualifying whereas in the 80s and 90s second place would also see you qualify. In short there is just no comparison in quality and quantity of today compared to 30 to 40 years ago.

Obviously, we have had spells where players available to us was not of the quality/quantity needed for is to qualify. Also whereas we could attract the best managers in the game to manage us in form of Jock Stein the job in recent years has not attracted top notch candidates as league management appeals much more.

Wont go too deep into this again as i think we discussed it at length before but the czech teams we faced in the 70s were one of the best european teams about. They won a euros in 76 i think. They were probably a tougher opponent than the serbia or ukraine we will face or will have faced. The 90s wasnt that easy either. Second place teams didnt qualify for the world cup automatically. We were the best runner up for the 98 world cup in a group with sweden and austria. Thats a big achievement given sweden were semi finalists at the 94 world cup. We had better players in the 60s,70s and 80s but the comps were smaller and often top sides missed out. These days you really have to be a poor side to miss out on the euros, up until euro 96 only 8 teams nade it to the main comp.

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15 minutes ago, Bristolhibby said:

I suppose also the fact that there’s simply more countries. Germany being the only exception.

Czechoslovak = 2

USSR = 11

Yugoslavia = 7

Gibraltar - Newbie

West Germany & East Germany = -1

20 additional countries, who all have taken a bite out of Scotland at some point, or at least made life difficult (Gibraltar accepted).

J

And look at some of those new countries accomplishments - Croatia. Perrenial qualifiers and always go deep in World Cups. Teams that were once whipping boys are now regular qualifiers usurping us. 

Where others have improved greatly we have stood still by comparison and so fallen behind them and slipped down the seedings which has harmed us a lot.

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The biggest factor has got to be our players not playing at a high level for so long. 

Our own league had top class Scotsmen who could compete with the top in Europe- the 60s, 70s and 80s then our domestic league changed. The OF pulled away from the rest and filled their teams with foreign talent 

We stopped producing players who could get into top EPL sides but EPL sides also filled their sides with top foreign talent. Its no surprise we are doing better when we have top talent playing at High levels.

Tierney, Robertson, mcginn, mctominay, Adams, Cooper, Hanley, Armstrong, gilmour all play in arguably the best league in the world

I think next year will be even better too. Gilmour will find a better loan move, mckenna could be in the EPL,christie will be in the EPL the only negative is Hanley will be back in the championship.

Patterson can break through at Everton or get a decent loan move and hickey is likely to move to the EPL

Imagine how good we would be if we had 30+ goal striker.

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4 minutes ago, Malcolm said:

In the 70s and 80s we were generally first or second seeds in groups where the top 2 sides qualified 

For the 70s world cups we had to beat the czechs who were euro champs in 76. Thats quite a tough task although we did have better players back then. Would you like to face the euro champs to get to the world cup in qatar? Not sure i would.

In 78 we also had to beat a pretty decent wales team as well.

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1 minute ago, mccaughey85 said:

For the 70s world cups we had to beat the czechs who were euro champs in 76. Thats quite a tough task although we did have better players back then. Would you like to face the euro champs to get to the world cup in qatar? Not sure i would.

In 78 we also had to beat a pretty decent wales team as well.

Well we had such a task a few years back when drawn in a group with France and Italy who were European Champs and World Champs if I remember correctly and we got edged out.

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You could probably argue either way in terms of qualification difficulty i.e. less countries but there were less qualifying places in the past. Today more countries but many more qualifying places for Euros/WC etc.

However, there's no doubt in my mind that Scotland have fallen behind in terms of skill and talent and the rest of the world has caught up or passed us. We've shown some gradual improvement in last 3-4 years though.

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 5/17/2022 at 4:17 PM, Bristolhibby said:

I suppose also the fact that there’s simply more countries. Germany being the only exception.

Czechoslovak = 2

USSR = 11

Yugoslavia = 7

Gibraltar - Newbie

West Germany & East Germany = -1

20 additional countries, who all have taken a bite out of Scotland at some point, or at least made life difficult (Gibraltar accepted).

J

You have to also add in Israel to the mix - while not a side that's qualified for anything since joining UEFA in the 90s, they're good enough to take regular points off of Pot 2/3 standard sides.

Looking at the current Elo ratings for each UEFA member (we're 20th), there are currently two teams above us who didn't exist prior to 1990 (Croatia and Ukraine). On this day in 2016 (we were 24th), there were four countries above us who didn't exist (Ukraine, Croatia, Slovakia and Bosnia).

On this day in 1990, we were 19th (East Germany ahead of us). We're roughly in the same position now as we were in 1990 - once adjusting for the change in UEFA membership over that time.

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On 5/17/2022 at 4:44 PM, vanderark14 said:

We stopped producing players who could get into top EPL sides but EPL sides also filled their sides with top foreign talent. Its no surprise we are doing better when we have top talent playing at High levels.

I think there's a statistic that since multiple teams from each country could qualify for the Champions League (late 90s), only nations with players in the top six/seven of total minutes played in the competition have won a major international competition (World Cup or Euros) - that includes Greece in 2004 [link].

As you say, it's not a surprise that having players playing at the highest levels is correlated with success. We simply haven't had those players until recently (relative to comparable nations).

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S*** performance really.

Dykes shouldn't be starting anymore. Adams tried his best but again feeding on scraps.

Not a good performance all over the pitch really, Ukraine deserved winners.

Team really peaked end of last year with the wins v Austria, Israel and Denmark so don't think the six month break helped at all....but then you remember all Ukraine is going through and their obvious lack of preparation and it's a futile excuse.

Probably won't have a better chance of making the world cup with the potential path, just have to concentrate on making euros regularly although nations league matches are going to be some comedown now.

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20 minutes ago, Tartan Chris said:

S*** performance really.

Dykes shouldn't be starting anymore. Adams tried his best but again feeding on scraps.

Not a good performance all over the pitch really, Ukraine deserved winners.

Team really peaked end of last year with the wins v Austria, Israel and Denmark so don't think the six month break helped at all....but then you remember all Ukraine is going through and their obvious lack of preparation and it's a futile excuse.

Probably won't have a better chance of making the world cup with the potential path, just have to concentrate on making euros regularly although nations league matches are going to be some comedown now.

Actually, I'd say Ukraine had the best preparation they have ever had. The squad (majority of it) together for a month to work on tactics and formations. Scotland had a week with some of them not joining the squad until two or three days ago.

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Posted (edited)

Well. If I can put a positive spin on it this Scotland side are far closer than they ever have been in 24 years at reaching a World Cup. I know that they will pick themselves up as a group and will rise and be a footballing nation once again on the international stage. 

Now the long balls by Steve Clarke were dreadful. The tactics failed. Compare that team to Celtic team who press down everything under Ange. The tactics failed the nation and I know that Steve Clarke has cemented his place in Scottish football history by taking us to Euro 2020. 

I would like the SFA to get a new manager in the door now. 

Getting on the train to Hampden today there's tens of thousands of new young tartan army fans full enthusiasm with the retro kits and the pubs packed full. So there's hope for the national team where there never was before. Its became cool to be a Scotland supporter again. 

I would also say that I missed the first 20 minutes because of the turnstiles in 40-49. I'd love a refund. 

Scotland never turned up anyway they were woeful. So bad the atmosphere never got going. 

Congratulations to Ukraine. 

Edited by Tartan_Tonna
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49 minutes ago, Caledonian Craig said:

Actually, I'd say Ukraine had the best preparation they have ever had. The squad (majority of it) together for a month to work on tactics and formations. Scotland had a week with some of them not joining the squad until two or three days ago.

Couldn't agree more. Reminded me a bit of South Korea prior to their own world cup. Not the best players in the world but so well organised they would give any random group of players a game.

Wales will have had a few more days to prepare but I wouldn't be surprised if Ukraine beat them. 

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That was a honking performance. How defensively bad were we! They could have been 3/4-0 up at half-time. 

Dykes isn't good enough to do any damage at a WC. Adams whilst decent, isn't the amazing talent we need to make us more dangerous uontop. Robertson, struggles in a team of averagely decent players compared to genuine world class ones he plays with at Liverpool. KT, McGinn are vital players for us, losing Tierney was a huge blow! 

Ukraine were amazing. Fair fucking dues and I hope they win in Cardiff. PS better go out now than in Wales on Sunday, boak central that. 

Whilst improving I wonder if that amazing spell beating Austria,Israel and Denmark was the highest we'll see for a while? I hope not, even though NL games I Armenia are hard things to get inspired for after coming that close to our first WC in 24 years! 

Clarke has improved us, no doubt at all but feck me, he's awfae Scottish! That putting in a bit of work/effort getting so close before failing at the last bit :

Nations League : we had that group 'won' thanks to COVID and Czech C team, yet we lost our last two games and missed our on promotion (probably a good thing). 

Tonight too. But we can't sack him, we are side who will be on the edge of Euro championships or not, and the occasional decent WC campaign but ultimately a game too far from getting there. 

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I think there are some folk in our support who are tripping over themselves to run us down at every turn. You know, the cunts who turn up on the battlefield after the fact to bayonet the wounded. You don't hear these bold statement from them before the game...but hindsight is a wonderful thing.

Out of our 10 games we won 7 drew 2 and lost 1. That is a pretty solid qualifying campaign for us or anyone at our level. To win our last 6 games like we did is something I can't recall any Scottish team doing.

We just did not turn up last night. And we have a habit of doing this. We are mentally fragile and all the turmoil around the fixture was enough to dissipate the momentum we had built up. You could sense it going into the game.

It is a shame because it took a lot to get us into that position and we just rolled over. If Clarke is conservative it is because he knows we are well capable of doing this. It breeds fear and that makes us overly cautious. Just look at some of ridiculous comments on here. No wonder some players are indifferent about playing for us. It is a thankless task.

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50 minutes ago, er yir macaroon said:

I think it’s apparent we can’t play two strikers against good teams. Time to start Souttar at RCB and put McTominay or Christie in midfield. We missed Tierney and Patterson last night, totally toothless.

We played two strikers against England and almost beat them in their own back yard.  I would say they are fairly good.

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