Euro U21 Qualifying - Group 4
Scotland U212Netherlands U210

Scotland U21 2-0 Netherlands U21

Oliver Burke slams in the opening goal for Scotland in Paisley
Oliver Burke slams in the opening goal for Scotland in Paisley

Captain Oliver Burke was on target as Scotland opened their Under-21 Euro 2019 qualifying campaign with a well earned win over Netherlands.

The West Brom forward powered in the opening goal in Paisley as the visitors failed to clear a corner.

Stevie Mallan then fired home when the Dutch defence blundered to present the Barnsley man with a one-on-one chance.

The visitors rarely threatened but did hit the post through Steven Bergwijn in the first half.

This was a far different story to when Scotland and Netherlands met at this level in the race for the Euro 2015. The Dutch won those two meetings 10-1 on aggregate, but no such chasm in class was evident here.

How Group 4 stands

Instead Burke - who has five senior Scotland caps - showed national head coach Gordon Strachan what he might be able to offer against Slovakia and Slovenia in October, while Mallan, Lewis Morgan and Dom Thomas also impressed.

Scotland should have taken an early lead when Thomas's corner fell to an unmarked John Souttar 12 yards out, with the Hearts defender blasting his volley way over the crossbar.

The hosts' manager, Scot Gemmill, was animated and vocal on the sidelines as his team continued to apply pressure in the direction a Dutch goalkeeper in the shape of Twente's Joel Drommel, who sometimes looked a bit nervous dealing with pass-backs.

Kilmarnock midfielder Thomas watched his deflected shot go wide before the same man played in the ever-threatening Morgan - playing on his own St Mirren patch - to shoot past the far post. The highly-rated winger went even closer moments later after leaving Denzel Dumfries dizzy.

Stevie Mallan celebrates making it 2-0 to Scotland
Mallan celebrates making it 2-0 to Scotland on 79 minutes

It took the visitors over half an hour to get their first real attempt in on goal and it cannoned back off the post. Bergwijn was denied following tidy set-up play by Pablo Rosario, who shot over from distance soon after.

Former St Mirren midfielder Mallan flighted in a two lovely deliveries for Aberdeen defender Scott McKenna either side of half-time; his first header was well saved and the second flew narrowly wide.

Scotland did hit the back of the net emphatically, though, when another Mallan corner could not be fully cleared by the Dutch defence and Burke, making his debut at this age group 17 months after his senior bow, rammed it into the middle of Drommel's goal.

Mallan had gone close with a neat flick before he extend Scotland's lead - running on to a loose ball after a terrible defensive mix-up and stroking it past Drommel from just inside the box. He is used to doing that in Paisley.

The Netherlands lost discipline in the closing stages with a flurry of yellow cards as Scotland got their campaign off to a great start.

  • Scotland meet England next at Middlebrough's Riverside on 6 October
  • Scot Gemmill's side are then away to Latvia four days later
  • Group winners qualify for finals in Italy and four best runners-up enter play-offs for last two places

Scotland Under-21 manager Scot Gemmill: "I'm delighted for the players, to play with that level of intelligence and intensity, the willingness to do the work that helps get that kind of result was there to be seen.

"We know we're working in the correct manner with a bunch of players that are willing to execute a game plan - and that's not just this age level but at the younger age levels as well."

Scores, Results & Fixtures

Tuesday 5th September 2017

As It Stood

A

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Greece U2122007166
2Belarus U21311123-14
3Croatia U2111003033
4Moldova U21310238-53
5Czech Rep U2110101101
6San Marino U21200203-30

B

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Slovakia U2122003126
2Northern Ireland U2132013216
3Albania U2131113304
4Spain U2111001013
5Estonia U21401325-31
6Iceland U21100123-10

C

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Denmark U2122009096
2Poland U2111003033
3Lithuania U21210136-33
4Finland U2110101101
5Faroe Islands U21301217-61
6Georgia U21100103-30

D

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Ukraine U2121107164
2England U2121104134
3Scotland U2111002023
4Latvia U21302114-32
5Netherlands U21201113-21
6Andorra U21201106-61

E

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1R. of Ireland U2122004136
2Kosovo U2142026426
3Israel U2121103124
4Germany U2111001013
5Norway U21301226-41
6Azerbaijan U21200226-40

F

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Belgium U2121102114
2Sweden U2111004133
3Hungary U2111002113
4Cyprus U21210135-23
5Turkey U2110100001
6Malta U21300336-30

G

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Russia U2121103034
2Armenia U2131113304
3Serbia U2111004043
4Austria U2111003033
5Macedonia U2111003033
6Gibraltar U214004013-130

H

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Romania U2132106247
2Switzerland U21311124-24
3Portugal U2111002023
4Bosnia and Herzegovina U2131027433
5Wales U2121013213
6Liechtenstein U21200208-80

I

TeamPWDLFAGDPts
1Kazakhstan U21311146-24
2Slovenia U2111003123
3France U2111004133
4Luxembourg U21310235-23
5Montenegro U2110101101
6Bulgaria U21100101-10
View full Euro U21 Qualifying tables

Top Stories