Scotland Goes With Levein

December 25, 2009 at 5:14 am | Posted in General Football, World Cup Memories | 2 Comments

Much like Hungary, Peru and Austria, Scotland is a case of the classic football nation simply disappearing off of the football map.

While Scotland has never gotten past the group stages at a World Cup finals, they always made a respectable showing.  In 1978 they defeated Holland, who went on to the  final.   They brought great players to the World Cup including Gemmill, Souness, Dalglish, Law, Bremner  and players who would play for the Vancouver Whitecaps in the future: David Harvey, Willie Johnston and Peter Lorimer.  The number of times they have played in the World Cup finals is impressive, having participated in the finals in 54, 58, 74, 78, 82, 86, 90, and 98.  Lets not forget it was Celtic, with its “Lions of Lisbon” that first brought the European Cup to the shores of Great Britain in 1967.

Times have been very bleak indeed recently as Scotland have failed to qualify for the finals since 1998.  Scottish football has been in massive decline, having been through numerous managers, foreign and domestic, none of whom has the solution to halt the slide.

Apparently Levein wants to revolutionize Scottish football from the ground up.  Lets hope he gets the support he needs to resurrect this one-proud footballing nation.

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  1. That’d be great to see Scotland back in the mix.

    So they defeated Holland in ’78? I didn’t know that. I think a book was even written about Scotland going to ’78 Argentina and how they were the only British Nation there so everyone was cheering for them in the UK. Famously, one of their players got ejected from international play for a doping offence back in ’78. http://www.bbc.co.uk/scotland/sportscotland/asportingnation/article/0002/print.shtml This kind of sums up the sojourn of the one representative Brit team in that tournament.

    As I said in the other post, well, I kind of watch Birmingham FC, the Blues because the one year they went down and got relegated about 3 years ago, they managed to defeat mighty Chelsea towards the end of the season to no avail. So, now, Birmingham is coached by McLeish and check Soccerway.com, their roster that drew Chelsea today had in the starting lineup, 9 UK/Ireland Republic players (think the latter had one Irishman but I consider that close to a home country, at least they are not “Continental”).

    I was reading on the ’82 World Cup the other day and Northern Ireland made a big splash that tourney. ’58 was the year of Wales I believe doing somewhat well in that Cup as well. So, we will see with these teams, surely, the Euro Tournament going up to 24 teams in 2016 I believe may see the likes of Scotland and Ireland with more chances of proceeding.

    But cheer up, the Scots I believe in the early ’90s were a very poor outfit. Also for further reading, one might websearch “Tartan Army” to find out about their fanbase.

    One last thing, you know, they are going to have a Tournament in Ireland and start having some sort of tournament with all of the home nations except for England opting out. I believe it starts in 2011.

    One can go to http://www.eloratings.net and see the games these countries have played, it’s amazing how the internationals for England, Scotland, etc. prior to 1950, maybe later, were so often against each other, England vs. Wales, games like that. I’ve also read the autobiographies of both Sir Stanley Matthews (a bit tedious) and Tom Finney, English legends from long ago and the history of these old rivalries was something. A Scotland/England game was really where it was at in the 1930s etc. and that big stadium in Scotland, Hampton would sell out, 100,000+ to see games like that.

    You know, what I wonder about is does all/most of Canada’s manpower go to Ice Hockey?? Because with so many world class hockey players, I always wonder what kind of soccer team they could have.

  2. Sorry, I meant to say, cheer up, the Scotland of the early ’90s was a bit poor, but now, well, they’ve played well some, not good enough but not awful.

    I’ll have to look up to see if you commented on the Henry hand ball, what a horrible way for Ireland to get knocked out of going to this next world cup.

    But we’ll see how things shape up in the long run.

    McLeish is doing a bang up job with Brum who’ve been relegated two bloody times in the last few years in the Premier League, so this is exciting.


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