England vs Scotland top five clashes

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For me as a young fan growing up, England and Scotland football clashes were one of the highly anticipated games in the football calendar.

There wasn’t a lot of live football during the 1980s and it was a chance to see the best of Britain lock horns in a game that was anything but friendly.

Tuesday’s clash at Celtic Park is the 112th meeting between both countries. It’s a fixture that has remained constant over 140 years. Here are five memorable clashes in the oldest fixture in world football...

1872: Scotland 0-0 England

It was the historic year of the first game between the Auld Enemy. The venue was the West of Scotland Cricket Club’s home ground at Hamilton Crescent, Partick.

Queen’s Park were the dominant force in Scotland and supplied every one of the starting XI. In contrast England’s players came from several clubs. A crowd of 4,000 witnessed the historic 0-0 draw.

1928: England 1-5 Scotland

It was raining heavily and Scotland were in no mood to take prisoners. Billy Smith hit the post for England before Alex Jackson drew first blood for the Tartan Army.

England defended stoutly but Scottish pressure paid off just before the interval – Alex James’ left wand doubling the lead for the visitors.

The floodgates opened in the second half as the mesmerising Scots upped the ante, picking off their foes with stunning skill and exquisite co-ordination. Jackson headed a third and Alex James completed his brace.

Scotland carved up the English rear-guard as they pleased. Jackson smoothly rounded off his man of the match performance by slotting his hat trick. England did not give up and self pride was somewhat restored after Bob Kelly scored a consolation.

The hypnotic show by the Scotsman earned them the nickname “The Wembley Wizards.”

1967: England 2-3 Scotland

This game is Scotland’s most famous win over their bitter rivals, coming only one year after England had been crowned world champions.

Although the English stepped out on to the Wembley turf on the crest of a 19 game unbeaten run their diehard opponents were oozing with flair and talent themselves. The starting eleven boasted four of Celtic’s “Lisbon Lions” alongside Billy Bremner, Denis Law and Jim Baxter.

It was Law who struck first before Bobby Lennox doubled the lead. The decision to turn Big Jack into a makeshift centre forward paid off as the older of the Charlton brothers halved the deficit.

Not for long though, and the Wembley crowd were silenced three minutes later as debutant Jim McCalliog made it 3-1 to the Scots. Geoff Hurst scored right away but Scotland held on for a historic 3-2 win.

The iconic moment of the match saw Slim Jim Baxter torment England as he played “keepie uppie” after slowing his stride down to walking pace. The bragging rights went north of the border as proud Scots announced themselves as unofficial “world champions.”

1989: Scotland 0-2 England

Chrissie Waddle opened for the visitors but for me the iconic moment was when the marauding debutant Steve Bull came on. “Bully” replaced John Fashanu and scored to secure a 2-0 win in what became the final Rous Cup fixture between the two sides.

I was convinced that the Wolves legend, a favourite of mine, would sign for Liverpool. Alas, it wasn’t to happen. However, the game was the making of Bull who continued his scoring form in the national team (four in 13 games).

He was selected by Bobby Robson to play for England at Italia 90 and still remains the last non top-flight player to have represented England at a World Cup finals tournament.

1996: England 2-0 Scotland

It was the summer of love as Terry Venables’ England dazzled the world with their slick brand of football. Hosts England met the Auld Enemy at Wembley in the second of their group matches at Euro 96.

Alan Shearer had discovered his scoring boots again in the first game and his rejuvenated form continued as he scored the first.

The game then turned into the Gazza show as a certain Paul Gascoigne of Glasgow Rangers sent Colin Hendry into cuckoo land before unleashing a sublime half volley past teammate Andy Goram.

It was the goal of the tournament, cementing Gascoigne’s reputation as a genius and one of the greatest players to have worn an England shirt. Unlucky Scotland also saw a Gary McAllister penalty saved by David Seaman.

Scotland Football
England Football
Paul Gascoigne

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