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Euro 2024 warm-up: Clarke wants to boost Scotland’s confidence in the box

Scotland boss will work on the training ground after 23 chances go begging against minnows

A photo of the Euro 2024 football logo

Scotland head coach Steve Clarke hopes he can boost his side’s confidence infront of goal after they spurned a glut of golden chances in the friendly win over Gibraltar.

Only five of Scotland’s 25 attempts on goal were on target in Monday night’s 2-0 win in the Algarve, with Ryan Christie breaking the deadlock after 58 minutes before sub Che Adams lashed home a late volley.

Clarke told BBC Scotland: “What we learned is that we can create chances and we just need to find the final finish. We need to work on it in training and their confidence in terms of finishing.

“When it comes to Che Adams – bang, goal. That’s the kind of confidence you need to show at this level.

“2-0, clean sheet. Let’s use it as a training exercise, which it was. We’re reasonably pleased.”

Adams came off the bench after Hearts 31-goal forward Lawrence Shankland was chosen to start up top for Scotland, with first choice frontman Lyndon Dykes ruled out of the Euros after picking up an injury in training last week.

Clarke said he would have ‘a relaxed day’ on Tuesday and would ‘have a little think about (how to replace him) and have a chat with my staff.’

Bristol City striker Tommy Conway netted for the under-21s in their 2-1 defeat to Turkey and Clarke admitted: “He’s done great and he’s certainly one that’s at the front of my mind.”

Leeds defender Liam Cooper limped off after a heavy challenge in the second half but Clarke said: “Liam’s okay, we think it’s just knee-to-knee contact on the pitch. We’ll see how he is in the morning. He’s a tough man.”

Liverpool teenager Ben Doak unexpectedly missed out on the game and a debut appearance and Clarke explained: “We took him off the bench tonight.

“I know I spoke about giving Ben minutes, but he just had a little reaction to the training days so we decided to be ultra cautious and take him out the firing line.”

Asked if he’ll be fit for Friday night’s friendly with Finland at Hampden Park, Clarke added: “I would hope so.”

Picture of Alex Hoad

Alex Hoad

Alex has more than 15 years' experience in sports journalism and has reported on multiple Olympics, World Cups and European Championships in additional to Champions League, Europa League and domestic football.