Scotland to base themselves in Glasgow ahead of Euro 2024

By Sports Desk January 08, 2024

Steve Clarke revealed Scotland will base themselves in Glasgow ahead of Euro 2024 to “feel the mood of the country” ahead of the tournament in Germany.

The Scots prepared for the previous Euros at a training camp just outside of Darlington in the north east of England before playing two games at Hampden Park in between a game against England at Wembley.

Scotland begin their build-up when they take on the Netherlands and Northern Ireland in March friendlies and will have two warm-up games in late May or early June ahead of opening the tournament against the hosts in Munich on June 14.

The final friendly has been pencilled in for Hampden and the Scotland squad will train at Lesser Hampden and stay in the city centre.

Clarke said: “We’re going to base ourselves in Glasgow. We’re not going abroad. I think with the last Euros it felt a little bit remote, out of the country, we didn’t really get a feel for how the nation was.

“Obviously it was in Covid times so it was a little bit different. This time my thinking is that I want the boys to feel the mood of the country before they leave for Germany.

“Plus, fantastic hotel, great pitch, so we know exactly what we’ve got. Home comforts. And then go and attack the tournament.

“That’s what I want for the players. It’s about feeling the mood of the nation before they go there, so they go there understanding the magnitude of the tournament they are going into. I feel maybe the last time, because it was Covid, because it was not a full Hampden, because we were based outside the country, they did not quite get the feel of how enthusiastic the nation were for it. We certainly know this time.”

Despite an encouraging goalless draw against England in the previous Euros, defeats by Czech Republic and Slovakia at Hampden meant that once again the Scots failed to get out of the group. However, Clarke believes the players are all the better for the experience.

The former West Brom and Kilmarnock boss said: “If you remember back, after those Euros when we got a little bit of stick, I defended the way we played. I said there were football moments which went against us, and that can happen.

“If I’m being honest last time I thought we were a little bit over-enthusiastic, especially in the home games.

“The best performance was a more controlled performance at Wembley where we controlled the game better and didn’t allow it to become an open game. That suited our style.

“I also said coming out of those Euros we would become a better team having spent so much time together, and I think that’s been the case. We did improve and we have improved.

“The good thing for me, and it’s what drives me and keeps me moving forward, is that I see more improvement. I think we can improve again. And hopefully this summer we can show we have improved again.

“The Nations League campaign, and getting through to the top section of that, was good for us. That was good for our confidence.

“And then going into the Euros campaign, I sat down at a board meeting and actually promised that if they backed the guys – it was about facilities at the time – we will qualify for Euro 2024. And we did, and we did it comfortably, which was a nice way to do it.”

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