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Scotland celebrates Euro finals qualification

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Scotland has been celebrating the men's national football team's achievement in qualifying for its first major tournament in more than 20 years.

The nail-biting penalty shoot out victory over Serbia secured qualification for the delayed Euro 2020 event, which will take place next year.

The men's team last played in a major tournament back in 1998.

There has been an outpouring of emotion from fans and players following the historic achievement.

A tweet from Scotland manager Steve Clarke's son John was among those which summed up the national mood.

He said: "My dad is my hero. Watching my hero take Scotland to an international competition is the greatest thing I'll ever see."

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites.View original tweet on Twitter

Social media feeds were quickly filled with the moments which will live on in fans' memories.

They ranged from goalkeeper David Marshall's delayed celebration to Ryan Christie's emotional post-match interview - and the team's joyful dressing room celebration to the song Yes Sir I Can Boogie.

Comedian Kevin Bridges was one of those celebrating in the aftermath of the match, saying: "Mad Scotland! Said it years ago that we'd quality for Euro 2021. Brilliant."

Outlander star Sam Heughan shared footage of the team celebrating in their hotel in Belgrade last night with the caption: "They've already won Euros with this!

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites.View original tweet on Twitter

As the celebrations continued the morning after, veteran broadcaster Archie Macpherson described the emotions felt by many fans when the match went to penalties.

He told BBC Radio's Good Morning Scotland programme that he kept his eyes shut during the crucial shoot-out.

"I have a deep aversion to penalty shoot-outs that I think, eventually, only psychiatry will overcome," he said.

He had commentated on the first ever penalty shoot out in European football, between Celtic and Inter Milan in Glasgow 1972 - when the first kick was missed by the home team.

Mr Macpherson said: "As the Scottish players walked up to the penalty spot I was actually seeing the ghost of Dixie Deans stepping forward and I expected to see the ball going over the bar or something like that.

"It was very, very tense and I enjoyed it like a 10-year-old schoolboy."

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However, Tartan Army member Scott Husband was keen to highlight the country's perfect penalty shoot-out record.

The men's team has only taken part in two - and has won them both.

He said: "I actually was very cool. I thought we were going to win it.

"We are the world champions at penalties. We have got a 100% record. We have taken 10 and scored 10."

'Incredible'

Katie Howard will be one of the volunteers at next summer's tournament, when some of the matches will be played in Glasgow.

She watched the decisive moment in her university student accommodation.

"The place blew up. It was so good," she said.

And Scotland women's record goal scorer Julie Fleeting was still on cloud nine when she spoke to Good Morning Scotland.

She said: "I can't be the only Scot who struggled to get to sleep last night with all the excitement.

"It was just incredible. It was a tremendous way to do it. Very, very nerve-wracking but it just added to the excitement of it all."

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites.View original tweet on Twitter

Politicians at Holyrood and Westminster also praised the national team after the dramatic win.

First Minister Nicola Sturgeon tweeted: "Massive congratulations to Steve Clarke and the team. After 22 years @ScotlandNT men are off to a major tournament. What a lift for the country. Well done!"

Prime Minister Boris Johnson congratulated Steve Clarke's history-makers. He posted: "So great to see Scotland going forward to the Euros. Massive well done to the whole team."

Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross tweeted: "Outstanding. We're going to the Euros."

Scottish Labour's Richard Leonard posted: "Scotland has done it! Congratulations to the Scotland men's team on this historic night. The people of Scotland will be with them all the way as they march on to the Euros."

And Alison Johnstone, co-leader of the Scottish Greens, tweeted: "YAAAAAS! Peak Scotland, that win! Congratulations! #Scoser Off to the Euros!"

More on this story

  • Serbia 1-1 Scotland: Visitors win 5-4 on penalties to end 23-year finals wait