Scotland’s hopes of qualifying for Euro 2016 were cruelly ended as they conceded with almost the last kick of the game to draw 2-2 with Poland at Hampden Park this evening.
Republic of Ireland’s shock 1-0 win over Germany knocks out the Scots, who arguably deserved victory in Glasgow because of their two wonderful goals while coming from behind.
After Robert Lewandowski had given Poland a third-minute lead with his 13th goal in five games, Matt Richie equalised with this 25-yard thunderbolt into the top corner on the stroke of half time.
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Steven Fletcher’s place in the team was under threat prior to kickoff, according to the Daily Record, but the Sunderland striker justified Strachan’s faith by completing the comeback on 62 minutes.
His fourth goal of the campaign, but first not against Gibraltar, was every bit as good as Richie’s as he delicately curled a left-footed shot inside the far post to send the Tartan Army into frenzy.
But the hosts could not survive the remaining half an hour without the lethal Lewandowski popping up again, with the Bayern Munich striker bundling the ball over the line in a stoppage-time scramble.
The heartbroken Scots play Group D whipping boys Gibraltar in their final qualifier, but the late equaliser means that they are now an insurmountable six points behind Ireland and Poland.
Scotland’s last appearance at a major tournament was in France, at the 1998 World Cup, but they will not be ending their 18-year wait to play on the global stage across the Channel next year.
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