Scotland 2-1 Cyprus: Oliver Burke earns Steve Clarke's first win
Highlights and report as Scotland claim second Euro 2020 qualifying win
Last Updated: 09/06/19 7:55am
Oliver Burke's 89th-minute strike earned Steve Clarke a 2-1 victory over Cyprus in his first game as Scotland manager.
Andy Robertson looked to have secured the first victory of Clarke's tenure with his rocket shortly after the hour, but Ioannis Kousoulos rocked Hampden Park when he headed Cyprus level with three minutes remaining.
Yet substitute Burke produced the most rapid of responses, restoring Scotland's lead with his first international goal 138 seconds later, converting a rebound after his sent a header crashing off the post.
Scotland's second Euro 2020 qualifying victory lifts them above Cyprus into third in Group I, three points adrift of second-placed Russia and six behind leaders Belgium.
Scotland: Marshall (7), O’Donnell (6), Mulgrew (6), McKenna (6), Robertson (8), McGinn (6), McLean (6), McGregor (6), Forrest (6), Fraser (7), Brophy (5).
Subs: Burke (6), McTominay (n/a), Armstrong (n/a).
Cyprus: Pardo (5), Kousoulos (6), N. Ioannou (5), Laifis (6), Margaca (6), Spoljaric (6), Artymatas (5), Markis (6), Efrem (6), Ioannou (6), Sotiriou (6).
Subs: Costi (6), Georgiou (6), Pittas (n/a).
Man of the Match: Andy Robertson.
Ryan Fraser looked in the mood with some surging runs down the left-hand side, but a swift break by the visitors in the 19th minute ended with attacker Andreas Makris testing David Marshall with a decent drive from 18 yards.
At the other end, Scotland defender Charlie Mulgrew forced Cyprus keeper Urko Pardo into a fine save at his left-hand post from a free-kick before debutant Eamonn Brophy headed the resulting corner past the post.
Another swift Cyprus break before half-time saw striker Pieros Sotiriou force Marshall into a great save with a low angled drive, and Hampden sat in silent frustration, hoping for improvement after the break.
There was no immediate upturn and instead Cyprus grew in confidence as Marshall was forced to save Matija Spoljaric's low drive.
However, just after the hour mark, with the crowd becoming increasingly restless, Robertson took it upon himself to fire in a shot from 25 yards which flew high past Pardo. The goal energised the Scotland players and fans and capped a fine week after the left-back's Champions League-winning exploits with Liverpool.
Steve Clarke made five changes to the side Alex McLeish fielded in his last game as Scotland boss. Kilmarnock striker Eamonn Brophy was handed his Scotland debut while David Marshall, Charlie Mulgrew, James Forrest and John McGinn returned.
Pardo spilled a McGregor shot soon afterwards but in the 77th minute Marshall was called into action again when he tipped a deflected shot from Makris over the bar. Nothing came from the corner and Scotland broke, with right-back Stephen O'Donnell taking a Fraser pass and lifting the ball past Pardo and the far post.
The Cypriot keeper made a diving save from Fraser's drive in the 85th minute before Kousoulos stunned Hampden when he equalised with a free header from a corner. But there was still time for Burke to grab a dramatic winner which sends Scotland to Belgium in high spirits.
- Scotland have now won all six of their previous meetings with Cyprus in all competitions, scoring 22 goals in the process.
- Cyprus have lost eight of their last nine away matches across all competitions, drawing the other 1-1 at Slovenia in October 2018.
- Scotland are unbeaten in nine competitive matches on home soil, winning six and drawing three.
- Andy Robertson's goal was just his third in 30 appearances for the Scottish national side, and his first since September 2017 against Lithuania.
- Andy Robertson's strike was Scotland's first goal from outside the box since Robertson himself last scored for the nation in September 2017 against Lithuania.
- There were just 138 seconds between Cyprus' equaliser and Scotland regaining the lead through Oliver Burke in the 89th minute.
Scotland manager Steve Clarke told Sky Sports: "That was interesting, a little bit different. I thought we did OK and when we got the 1-0 I felt we were quite comfortable in the game. We switched off at a set play and that's something you shouldn't do at this level, but I thought the resilience and the character of the players to bounce back... it would have been easy to feel sorry for themselves, but they didn't. It was a really important three points for us."
Scotland continue their Euro 2020 qualifying campaign away in Belgium on Tuesday - live on Sky Sports Main Event from 7pm; Kick-off at 7.45pm.
Cyprus, meanwhile, travel to Group I Russia - live on Sky Sports Football - Red Button from 7.35pm on Tuesday; Kick-off at 7.45pm.