Scotland to play France in June 2016 friendly

James McFadden takes on Claude Makelele at the Parc des Princes in September 2007. Picture: PA
James McFadden takes on Claude Makelele at the Parc des Princes in September 2007. Picture: PA
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SCOTLAND are heading to France in the summer after all – but only to play a friendly international.

Gordon Strachan’s side are to meet the Euro 2016 hosts in Metz on Saturday 4 June. It will be the first time Scotland and France have met since 2007 when James McFadden scored a stunning winner in Paris.

Scotland, of course, had hoped to be in France this summer to play in the European Championship finals but failed to qualify.

The hosts will now use the game with Strachan’s team to fine tune their own preparations for the summer jamboree.

The French Football Federation confirmed the match on its official website yesterday. It will be played at Metz’s Stade Saint-Symphorien with an 8pm kick-off.

It will be the final warm-up match for Didier Deschamps’ team, who will also play Cameroon in Nantes on Monday, 30 May. France open their own tournament against Romania in the Stade de France on 10 June, then meet Albania in Marseilles five days later before completing their Group A fixtures against Switzerland in Lille on 19 June.

Last month Scotland confirmed March friendlies against the Czech Republic away and Denmark at home as preparations begin for the 2018 World Cup qualifiers which start in September.

The Scots play the Czechs in Prague on 24 March and the Danes at Hampden five days later.

Strachan’s side open their 2018 World Cup qualifying campaign in the autumn, against Malta away on 4 September. They will also meet Lithuania, Slovakia, England and Slovenia in Group F as they bid to qualify for Russia.

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