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European Championship | Group Stage
Jun 23, 2024 at 8pm UK

0 - 1

McTominay (50')
FT(HT: 0-0)
Csoboth (90+10')
Styles (18'), Orban (26'), Schafer (44'), Kleinheisler (75'), Csoboth (90+11')

Preview: Scotland vs. Hungary - prediction, team news, lineups

:Headline: Preview: Scotland vs. Hungary - prediction, team news, lineups:
Sports Mole previews Sunday's European Championship clash between Scotland and Hungary, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.
Sports Mole


The Scotland fans have certainly been in full voice throughout the build-up to and first half of their potential history-making game against Hungary, but the match itself has so far failed to ignite into action.

While Steve Clarke's side dominated the ball in the first 45 minutes they were unable to break down the stubborn Hungary defence and are yet to take a single shot at Peter Gulacsi's goal.

Hungary, on the other hand, appeared more than happy to sit deep and spring forward on the counter and came close to opening the scoring after 41 minutes when Dominik Szoboszlai's free kick was met in the air by Willi Orban, but his header hit the crossbar and bounced out for a goal kick.

Clarke and the Tartan Army will be wanting much more from their side in the second 45 minutes, and they are sure to push for the opening goal with a potential place in the next round on the line.


Both needing victory to have any chance of reaching Euro 2024's knockout phase, Group A rivals Scotland and Hungary go head-to-head in Stuttgart on Sunday evening.

While the Tartan Army picked up their first point by holding Switzerland last time out, Hungary remain pointless and are bound for the exit barring a miracle.

Match preview

In the process of salvaging some pride from their European Championship campaign, Scotland kept themselves in contention to reach the last 16 with a 1-1 draw against Switzerland in midweek.

Having suffered a heavy 5-1 defeat to Germany on opening night, Steve Clarke's men went ahead in the 13th minute, when Scott McTominay fired home with the help of a huge deflection.

However, tournament specialist Xherdan Shaqiri soon took advantage of an Anthony Ralston error to curl an unstoppable strike into the top corner, and Switzerland were back on level terms in spectacular fashion.

Grant Hanley later rattled the goal frame, while Scotland survived some scares at the other end, but picking up a point means they might yet go through by beating Hungary on Sunday.

Progressing to the knockout rounds of a major finals for the first time has been Clarke's stated aim for this summer, and finishing third in Group A may well be enough to fulfil that ambition.

Only if they win handsomely and Switzerland lose by a significant margin to Germany will the Tartan Army be able to snatch second spot, so they must try to tally four points from three games, then cross their fingers and hope.

However, history suggests that could be easier said than done: Scotland have won just two of their 11 European Championship matches to date.

Meanwhile, Hungary are winless in their last eight attempts at the Euros, and another failure this weekend would see them equal the all-time record run for games without a victory.

Indeed, the Magyars have won only one of their last 17 matches at major tournaments when pitched against fellow European nations, following back-to-back defeats at the start of their Group A campaign.

Marco Rossi's men had high expectations when heading towards Germany, as they had previously lost just once in 16 matches across all competitions - now they are staring an early exit straight in the face.

After being beaten 3-1 by Switzerland in their opener, before succumbing 2-0 to the hosts on Wednesday, Hungary categorically cannot finish in the top two and will be unable to reach the last 16 if they fail to beat Scotland.

Even then, a total of three points is unlikely to see them through as one of the best third-placed teams, so the outlook certainly seems bleak.

Scotland European Championship form:

Scotland form (all competitions):

Hungary European Championship form:

Hungary form (all competitions):

Team News

Scotland's starting XI against Switzerland had a combined total of 470 caps - their most ever for a men's international - and Steve Clarke is set to name a similarly experienced side on Sunday.

However, he will be missing key defender Kieran Tierney, who was forced off by a hamstring injury in midweek and has been ruled out; Ryan Porteous is also unavailable, having been handed a two-match ban after his red card versus Germany.

Clarke's defensive options were already depleted by pre-tournament injuries to Aaron Hickey and Nathan Patterson, so Scott McKenna should deputise for Tierney in the Tartan Army's back three: McKenna joins Anthony Ralston, John McGinn, and Scott McTominay in being one booking away from missing a potential last-16 tie.

The latter has taken four of Scotland's 13 shots at Euro 2024 and nearly a third of their touches in the opposition area. Since the start of 2023, McTominay has also scored eight goals in 10 competitive internationals - only one fewer than all other Scottish players combined.

Bournemouth midfielder Ryan Christie and Hearts forward Lawrence Shankland are vying for promotion from the bench, but both may again be restricted to cameo appearances.

Meanwhile, Marco Rossi may be more likely to rotate his resources, as Hungary have little left to lose and will surely attack Scotland from the start.

The Magyars are not expected to deviate from their familiar 3-4-2-1 formation, but Loic Nego, fit-again Callum Styles and South Korea-based striker Martin Adam are among several contenders to come in.

Though he missed full training earlier this week, captain Dominik Szoboszlai should again provide drive from an advanced midfield role, with either Adam or Barnabas Varga - the latter of whom scored his nation's only goal so far - leading the line up front.

Like Szoboszlai, Willi Orban is a certain starter, and the RB Leipzig defender leads Hungary for possession won (12), successful passes (82) and tackles made (six) at these finals.

Scotland possible starting lineup:
Gunn; Hendry, Hanley, McKenna; Ralston, McGregor, Gilmour, Robertson; McTominay, McGinn; Adams

Hungary possible starting lineup:
Gulacsi; Fiola, Orban, Dardai; Nego, A. Nagy, Schafer, Kerkez; Sallai, Szoboszlai; Varga

We say: Scotland 2-2 Hungary

Sunday night will see the two nations lock horns in their first competitive encounter: all nine previous meetings were international friendlies, but the stakes are now far higher.

Neither side will think about sitting back, as both pride and the chance of edging through to the last 16 are at stake in Stuttgart.

Hungary's hopes are vanishingly slim, but they boast sufficient firepower to exploit Scotland's dubious defence and could knock the Tartan Army out by at least denying them victory.

For data analysis of the most likely results, scorelines and more for this match please click here.

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