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Euro 2024: Scotland boss Steve Clarke ready to approach Germany with 'respect, not fear'

"We're ready" says Scotland boss Clarke ahead of taking on hosts Germany in the opening match of Euro 2024 at the Allianz Arena in Munich on Friday night; follow the game with our live blog on the Sky Sports website and App

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Scotland manager Steve Clarke wants the believes to believe they can cause an upset in the opening game of Euro 2024 against hosts Germany.

Steve Clarke insists Scotland will face Germany in the opening game of Euro 2024 with "respect" but they will show no "fear" against the hosts.

They kick off the tournament at the Allianz Arena in Munich on Friday night as they look to progress beyond the group stages of a major tournament for the first time.

Scotland have qualified for consecutive European championships but this is their first competition on foreign ground since reaching the World Cup in France in 1998.

And Clarke accepts the stakes are high.

"We know it's a big game but, for us, it's the opening game of a four-team section, three matches and we know what we have to do to qualify out the section and that's all we're focused on," he said.

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Scotland midfielder Billy Gilmour is hoping to start the Euro 2024 opener against Germany and go up against 'one of the best midfielders in the game' in Toni Kroos.

"The enormity of the opening game is a little bit of a sideshow and hopefully we don't get too involved in that.

"For sure, it's a difficult game. One of the mantras I've always had is respect everyone and fear no one so we come here with a lot of respect for the host nation, we know they're a good team but hopefully on the night we can show we're a good team too."

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Germany are 23 places above Scotland in the FIFA world rankings, but Clarke remains confident about his side's Euro progression.

Scotland's training base is in the Bavarian town Garmisch Partenkirchen
Image: Scotland's training base is in the Bavarian town Garmisch Partenkirchen

"We believe we can get a result every time we go to the pitch, otherwise what's the point," the former Kilmarnock boss added.

"We prepared well, we're ready and hopefully we can show that.

"I think we should all be proud that we're here. It's been a long time since 1998 when we actually travelled abroad to appear in a tournament like this.

"That's why everyone is so excited. We're proud we've been able to do back-to-back tournaments and hopefully by the end of this we'll be even more proud at having done something a little bit more special in regards to Scottish football.

"Most of the players have been involved in big matches before so I'm sure they'll handle it well."

Roberston: We've waited a long time for this

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Scotland captain Andy Robertson is excited about the challenge ahead as he prepares to lead the side into the Euro 2024 opener against Germany on Friday night.

Captain Andy Robertson cannot wait to lead Scotland out at the Allianz Arena as he expressed his pride in the squad as they aim to cause an upset:

"We've waited a long time for this game, it feels as if it's been years and years coming. We know how much of a challenge it's going to be, one more sleep and we'll be ready come kick-off.

"I don't really think about my emotions too much. I feel the same as the rest of the boys. I feel immensely proud and very excited as well. It's amazing to be captain, they make my life very easy.

"Even the new boys that step in, they embrace it early doors and it keeps the feel-good factor going.

"It's important we show up to our maximum and if we do that we can create a bit of history. Tomorrow night we are playing a team full of quality, in front of their home fans, but it's a challenge we're excited for.

"We expect a lot from ourselves and hopefully we can do that on the pitch."

Scotland's record vs Germany

James Forrest and Grant Hanley played in Scotland's last match against Germany in 2015
Image: James Forrest and Grant Hanley played in Scotland's last match against Germany in 2015

The teams have faced each other 17 times and last met in a Euros qualifier in 2015 with Scotland losing to the then world champions 3-2 at Hampden Park.

Two of Scotland's current squad, James Forrest and Grant Hanley, started that match in Glasgow.

Don Hutchison scored in Scotland's late win vs Germany in 1999
Image: Don Hutchison scored in Scotland's late win versus Germany in 1999

Scotland have only beaten their opening opponents four times, with the last victory coming in a friendly in 1999.

Managed by Craig Brown, Scotland defeated a German side that included names such as Oliver Bierhoff and Lothar Matthaus thanks to a second-half goal from Everton's Don Hutchison.

Scotland's Euro 2024 schedule

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John McGinn joins in some Bavarian dancing as Scotland arrive in Germany ahead of Euro 2024!

Scotland have history kicking off tournaments, having been drawn to face Brazil in the opener at World Cup 1998, a game they narrowly lost 2-1 to a second-half Tom Boyd own goal.

This time around the venue is the Munich Football Arena (Allianz Arena) where the hosts are their opponents.

The Scots also face games against perennial qualifiers Switzerland in Cologne on June 19, with Hungary - who reached the knockouts in 2016 - awaiting in Stuttgart on June 23.

Scotland’s potential route to the final finishing as group winners…

If Scotland finish as winners of Group A but all other results at Euro 2024 go with the world rankings, the Scots’ opponents in the knockout rounds would be…

Round of 16: Saturday June 29 – Scotland vs Denmark (Westfalenstadion, Dortmund)

Quarter-final: Friday July 5 – Spain vs Scotland (MHPArena, Stuttgart)

Semi-final: Tuesday July 9 – Scotland vs Netherlands; kick-off 8pm (Allianz Arena, Munich)

Final: Sunday July 14 – Scotland vs France; kick-off 8pm (Olympiastadion, Berlin)

Scotland’s potential route to the final finishing as group runners-up…

If Scotland finish as Group A runners-up but all other results at Euro 2024 go with the world rankings, the Scots’ opponents in the knockout rounds would be…

Round of 16: Saturday June 29 – Scotland vs Italy (Olympiastadion, Berlin)

Quarter-final: Saturday July 6 – England vs Scotland (Merkur Spiel-Arena, Düsseldorf)

Semi-final: Wednesday July 10 – France vs Scotland; kick-off 8pm (Allianz Arena, Munich)

Final: Sunday July 14 – Spain vs Scotland; kick-off 8pm (Olympiastadion, Berlin)

If Scotland finish as one of four best third-placed teams...

One of:

Sunday June 30 - Group B winners vs third-placed side from Group A/D/E/F (RheinEnergieStadion, Cologne)

Monday July 1 - Group F winners vs third-placed side from Group A/B/C (Waldstadion, Frankfurt)

Tuesday July 2: Group E winners vs third-placed side Group A/B/C/D (Allianz Arena, Munich)Quarter-finals

If Scotland finish first in Group A and win round of 16 game...

Friday July 5 (MHPArena, Stuttgart)

If Scotland finish second in Group A and win round of 16 game...

Saturday July 6 (Merkur Spiel-Arena, Dusseldorf)

If Scotland finish as one of four best third-placed teams and win round of 16 game...

One of:

Friday July 5 (MHPArena, Stuttgart)

Friday July 5 (Volksparkstadion, Hamburg)

Saturday July 6 - (Olympiastadion, Berlin)

Semi-finals

If Scotland finish first in Group A, win round of 16 game and win quarter-final...

Tuesday July 9 - kick-off 8pm (Allianz Arena, Munich)

If Scotland finish second in Group A, win round of 16 game and win quarter-final...

Wednesday July 10 - kick-off 8pm (Westfalenstadion, Dortmund)

If Scotland finish as one of four best third-placed teams, win round of 16 game and win quarter-final...

One of:

Tuesday July 9 - kick-off 8pm (Allianz Arena, Munich)

Wednesday July 10 - kick-off 8pm (Westfalenstadion, Dortmund)

And finally, the final...

Sunday July 14 - kick-off 8pm (Olympiastadion, Berlin)

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