Scotland 1-0 Denmark: Matt Ritchie strikes in narrow win
Last Updated: 30/03/16 3:32pm
Matt Ritchie's opportunistic first-half strike earned Scotland a hard-fought 1-0 victory over Denmark at Hampden Park on Tuesday.
The Bournemouth midfielder pounced on Daniel Agger's error and hesitancy from Kasper Schmeichel in the eighth minute to grab the Scots a lead they would not relinquish.
Denmark will feel as though they should have got something from the game after a promising second-half display, but Pierre Hojbjerg and Martin Braithwaite failed to convert their dominance into goals.
After the disappointment of missing out on Euro 2016, the Scots held on for a second consecutive 1-0 victory after Thursday's win in the Czech Republic.
That victory had been recorded with a totally different starting 11 as Gordon Strachan had named two match squads, but nevertheless confidence will have been improved as he now prepares for friendlies against Italy and France ahead of Euro 2016, for which the Scots failed to qualify, and World Cup qualification later this year.
This match was a landmark occasion for Scotland skipper Scott Brown, who earned his 50th cap, while 18-year-old Celtic team-mate Kieran Tierney and Hibernian midfielder John McGinn made their debuts.
Those fans who had braved the weather on a sodden night at Hampden - the stadium was less than half full - saw Ritchie put the Scots ahead thanks to a dreadful mistake by Agger.
Brondby's former Liverpool defender was in control of a stray Brown pass but he misjudged the pace of the ball while shepherding it back to Schmeichel, allowing Ritchie to nip in and knock the ball past the Leicester number one.
Denmark began to play a bit and in the 14th minute only a timely intervention by Tierney on Yussuf Poulsen, who had been sent though by Christian Eriksen, prevented the Denmark striker getting a shot on goal.
In the 32nd minute forward Nicolai Jorgensen forced a good save from Gordon with a shot on the turn, moments after the Celtic goalkeeper had saved a close-range effort from the same player.
Charlie Mulgrew came on for Tierney at half-time, with winger Ikechi Anya on for Steven Fletcher, as Jonas Lossl took over from Schmeichel in the Danish goal, the substitute goalkeeper soon having to tip a Shaun Maloney drive over the bar.
Denmark came forward in a better second half display and, in the 72nd minute, Gordon made a fine double save, first blocking a powerful drive from Eriksen before brilliantly parrying the follow up header from substitute Braithwaite, on since the start of the second half for Poulsen.
At the other end, after good work by Anya on the flank in a rare Scotland foray forward, Denmark defender Andreas Christensen threw himself to block Ritchie's goal-bound drive for a corner.
Substitute Liam Bridcutt received a yellow card from Norwegian referee Sveinn Oddvar Moen in the 79th minute for a robust challenge on Erik Sviatchenko, which might have merited more on another occasion.
Nottingham Forest winger Oliver Burke came on to make his debut in place of Ritchie for the last 10 minutes and his cross was almost put into the net by Martin, albeit inadvertently, in the final minute, before the four added minutes came and went.