The reason is two-fold. The Nations League has replaced the vast majority of friendlies in the UEFA international calendar, meaning there has been something riding on almost every game since Scotland’s last home ‘international challenge’ against Portugal – save for two Euro 2020 warm-ups last June.
The other, is the reason for the hastily arranged friendly. Ukraine were scheduled to visit Hampden for the World Cup qualification play-off semi-final – but due to the Russian invasion of the country, the match has been moved to June.
That left Steve Clarke with a blank matchday, but as a result of the conflict and Russia’s ban from FIFA competition, Poland were also left without a play-off opponent and both national associations have come together to arrange a friendly which will raise funds for UNICEF’s humanitarian response in Ukraine with £10 from every ticket sold donated to UNICEF UK’s emergency appeal for Ukraine.
Steve Clarke still selected a strong squad – including recalls for Ryan Jack and David Marshall in his original selection and a first call-up for Aaron Hickey and then siubsequent call-ups for Craig Halkett and Zander Clark.
Here is the team he has selected from the pool for the first of two friendlies – next week’s will be against the losing side in the play-off semi-final between Wales and Austria in Cardiff.