What do Scotland need to qualify for Euro 2020 knockout stage & who could they play?

What do Scotland need to qualify for Euro 2020 knockout stage & who could they play?

What results do Steve Clarke’s side need and which opponents lie in wait should they progress to the round of 16?

Expectations were low when Scotland arrived at Euro 2020 for their first major tournament appearance in 23 years, but their journey could still extend into the knockout stage.

Steve Clarke’s side have only picked up a point from their first two Group D fixtures, but have an outside chance of qualifying for the last 16 ahead of a meeting with Croatia at Hampden Park on Tuesday night.

What are the permutations and potential opponents for Scotland in the knockout stage?  Goal takes a look at the possibilities.

What results do Scotland need to progress from Group D?

Scotland can snatch second place if they beat Croatia and England lose against the Czech Republic. However, it would require a sizeable swing in goal difference as England are currently three goals better off.

Clarke’s men earned a credible 0-0 draw with the Three Lions at Wembley last time out, but lost their opener to the Czechs 2-0 and, consequently, sit bottom with one point and a goal difference of minus one.

If Scotland fail to beat Croatia, who also have just one point so far, they will be out. If England and the Czech Republic play out a draw to each move up to five points, then Scotland can’t finish in the top two automatic qualification places.

The most likely way for the Tartan Army to qualify would be as one of the four best third-placed teams in the six groups, and four points will be enough to achieve that goal.

Who could Scotland play in the Euro 2020 last 16?

The identity of Scotland’s opponents should they qualify for the last 16 depends on where they finish in Group D.

If Clarke’s team can somehow grab the runners-up spot in the pool then they will play the second-placed team in Group E – one of Sweden, Slovakia, Spain or Poland.

In the event that Scotland finish third, the permutations are a little more complex.

A third-place finish could see them play the top-ranked team in Group B – Belgium – or else they will be pitted against the Group E winners, with Sweden currently in pole position for that spot.

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