MX23RW : Saturday, September 18 13:22:50| >> :600:969624:969624:
Mar 28, 2021 at 7.45pm UK at Bloomfield Stadium
Peretz (44')
Peretz (81')
FT(HT: 1-0)
Fraser (56')
Hendry (28')

Steve Clarke: 'Too early to worry about points total'

Steve Clarke: 'Too early to worry about points total'
© Reuters
Steve Clarke's side followed up a 2-2 home draw against Austria by being held to a 1-1 draw by fourth seeds Israel in Tel Aviv.

Scotland head coach Steve Clarke claims it is too early to say they are already struggling in their World Cup group after his side drew their second game of the campaign.

Clarke's side followed up a 2-2 home draw against Austria by being held to a 1-1 draw by fourth seeds Israel in Tel Aviv.

Top seeds Denmark had won at the same venue three days earlier before thrashing Moldova 8-0 to move four points clear of Scotland.

Clarke said: "I can't look into the future, I can't tell if it's two good points or whether we have dropped four points and it's going to be costly. It's very difficult to tell.

"Everyone talks about Israel being fourth seeds but Israel are a good team and they have proven that against Scotland over the recent run of games. We have played a lot against them and there is never anything in the game.

"We are unbeaten, I don't know if two points is good or bad. You are asking me to predict the future and I'm afraid I can't do that.

"If we beat the Faroes midweek which we have to look to do, we have to play well and respect the opposition because they are nobody's mugs.... Every game at international level now is difficult. Spain scored in 93rd minute to beat Georgia, Malta drew at Slovakia, Luxembourg beat the Republic of Ireland.

"We have to respect the opposition and if we get three points by the end of the week, Austria play Denmark so one of them or both are going to drop points. So let's see what happens."

For the fourth game running, Scotland conceded the opening goal. Like they did against Austria, Clarke's side started slowly and Israel took a deserved 44th-minute lead when David Marshall palmed Dor Peretz's long-range shot into the top corner.

Clarke changed formation at half-time by bringing on Ryan Christie for defender Jack Hendry and Scotland levelled 11 minutes into the second half through Ryan Fraser.

Scotland had the better chances to win it but could not find a way through again.

Ryan Fraser, second right, earned Scotland a point in Israel
Ryan Fraser, second right, earned Scotland a point in Israel (Ariel Schalit/AP)

When asked what he put Scotland's poor start down to, Clarke said: "A good start from the Israeli team. Really good, on the front foot, bright and inventive, put us under a little bit of pressure and pressed us well. We didn't handle the press very well. So credit the opposition.

"We had to dig in and I could see us getting to half-time at 0-0. To concede from a decent shot from distance was disappointing.

"The tweak in the system seemed to help us and we were much better second half."

Israel head coach Willi Ruttensteiner claimed Scotland barely turned up before half-time.

Israel celebrate Dor Peretz's opener in Tel Aviv
Israel celebrate Dor Peretz's opener in Tel Aviv (Ariel Schalit/AP

"The first half was really good, Scotland were almost not on the pitch," he said. "But at this level we must finish the game.

"The intensity was so high you can't hold it for 90 minutes. Also Scotland have a strong team and they did very well in the second half.

"But also second half we had two good chances, although Scotland were better."

ID:441000: cacheID:441000:1false2false3false:QQ:: from db desktop :LenBod:restore:8080:
Restore Data
Share this article now:
Did you know...?
England manager Gareth Southgate pictured on March 25, 2021
Read Next:
Sunday's World Cup qualifying predictions including Albania vs. England

rhs 2.0
Todays Game Header Right
Premier League
Scottish Premiership
La Liga
Serie A
Ligue 1
Primeira Liga
League One
League Two
National League
Scottish Championship
Scottish League One
Scottish League Two
Turkish Super Lig
Belgian Pro League
Greek Superleague
Russian Premier League
Ukrainian Premier League
Norwegian Eliteserien
Swedish Allsvenskan
Finnish Veikkausliiga
NIFL Premiership
League of Ireland Premier
Welsh Premier League
Belarusian Premier League
Segunda Division
Serie B
Ligue 2
Major League Soccer
Copa Diego Maradona
Uruguayan Primera Division
Liga MX
J1 League
Premier League 2 - Div 1
1Manchester UnitedMan Utd4310113810
5Manchester CityMan City4301111109
6Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton43015329
7Tottenham HotspurSpurs43013309
8West Ham UnitedWest Ham422010558
9Leicester CityLeicester420246-26
11Crystal Palace41215505
12Aston Villa411257-24
13Wolverhampton WanderersWolves410323-13
16Leeds UnitedLeeds5032512-73
18Newcastle UnitedNewcastle5023613-72
20Norwich CityNorwich4004111-100

Subscribe to our Newsletter

Transfer Talk Daily
Match previews - twice weekly
Morning Briefing (7am UTC)
Ultra close-up image of Kevin De Bruyne [NOT FOR USE IN ARTICLES]Get the latest transfer news, match previews and news direct to your inbox!