Scotland player ratings: the defender who stood up to Haaland and the standout who did the work of two men

Scotland's players celebrate after Lyndon Dykes equaliser in Norway. (Photo by FREDRIK VARFJELL/NTB/AFP via Getty Images)Scotland's players celebrate after Lyndon Dykes equaliser in Norway. (Photo by FREDRIK VARFJELL/NTB/AFP via Getty Images)
Scotland's players celebrate after Lyndon Dykes equaliser in Norway. (Photo by FREDRIK VARFJELL/NTB/AFP via Getty Images)
Scotland gave their Euro 2024 qualification hopes a huge boost with a 2-1 victory in Norway after a dramatic late comeback. Here is how the Scotland players rated out of 10…

Angus Gunn

The Norwich City keeper guessed the right way for what so long appeared a decisive penalty from Erling Haaland. It didn’t prove so because failing to lay a glove on the immaculately placed kick from the Manchester City sensation was the only occasion he looked like being beaten. Not seriously troubled otherwise, he exuded confidence with his handling of crosses and a couple of tame efforts that was crucial in Scotland deriving full value from their bonkers late turnaround. 7

Ryan Porteous

It was right and proper the centre-back’s tendency to indulge in a spot of judo-style grappling in the box didn’t end up costing Scotland dearly. The spot-kick it earned for Haaland - who decked it like a felled tree when the Watford man had a brief fistful of his jersey - could be placed in the highly debatable category. Moreover, it was out of keeping with the discipline he brought to his performance. Brought to a close in the 78th minute when Steve Clarke gambled masterfully by introducing matchwinner Kenny McLean for one of his three pivots as he reverted to a back four to push his team further up the pitch. 7

Jack Hendry

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The Club Brugge man doesn’t lack confidence. He said he backed himself to handle Haaland and, for the most part, he walked the walk after talking the talk. There were calls for him to take the long walk when he unceremoniously yanked the striker to the ground as he looked to race on to a through ball but the yellow the 41st minute offence earned him was probably the right ball from referee Matej Jug on an evening of other questionable calls from the official. 7

Kieran Tierney

A worrying sight to see the Arsenal full-back grimacing as he left the field little after the hour with an injury problem. The need to replace him with Liam Cooper robbed Steve Clarke’s men of their most robust and unflustered presence in their defensive three. Handed a ridiculous booking for a ball-winning tackle in the early minutes of the second period. 7

Aaron Hickey

Strangely nervy in the initial stages the right wing-back struggled to make much of an impression throughout. The Brentford performer wasn’t bad, he just didn’t really contribute much of anything. 5

Scott McTominay

Norway’s domination of possession meant the country’s galloping goalscorer from their previous two Euro 2024 outings never had any opportunities to repeat his Spanish scoring-double heroics. He had to content himself with the less glamorous duties of blocking off spaces, giving everything to those tasks. 6

Callum McGregor

The Celtic captain found himself in a similar situation to McTominay. Didn’t see much of the ball, though used it efficiently and wisely whenever he had it in his charge. Gave way to Billy Gilmour in the 78th minute as Clarke made a triple change that ended up altering the entire complexion of the encounter. 6

Andrew Robertson

New York skyscrapers don’t stand as tall as the Scotland captain did for his country in Norway. He was immense on all fronts, his dynamism and dig resulting in the Liverpool left-back doing the work of two players as he sliced down his flank and slammed into challenges to choke off threats in his own final third. 9

John McGinn

Struggled to retain possession early on in a crowded midfield area and never succeeded in being the driving force we have come to expect in Scotland colours. Or pose the threat that has made him top scorer in the current era with only one tame effort on goal. Still played a crucial role in the 89th minute winner, mind. 6

Ryan Christie

Rentless in his scavenge-hunt for moments on the ball, he never allowed himself to become disheartened through having such few chances to produce any promptings. For that he deserves immense credit. 6

Lyndon Dykes

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The Queens Park Rangers wasn’t forced to work off scraps. It was scraps of scraps he had to contend with as Scotland made no impression at the top end of the pitch. Until they did. His refusal to lose heart meant that when his moment arrived as the ball landed at him from a fortunate deflection 14 yards out in the 87th minute, the striker was able to come alive in the most energising and enterprising fashion to poke home for an equaliser. And then follow his ninth goal for Scotland by teeing up McLean for his team’s coup de grace. 7

Substitutes: Liam Cooper (4) had a couple of iffy moments following his 65th arrival for the injured Tierney before settling down. An ultra-composed, ultra-cool finish for the 89th minute meant Kenny McLean (7) proved Scotland’s super-sub, with fellow 78th minute arrivals Billy Gilmour (5), and Stuart Armstrong (5) playing their part in the ridiculous turnaround. In making his senior debut in the 91st minute as Clarke sought to see out a ridiculous win, centre-back Dom Hyam thankfully did not see much action, though he was guilty of clumsy challenge to concede a needless foul.



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