MX23RW : Saturday, September 25 19:48:24| >> :600:877014:877014:

Scotland manager Steve Clarke sympathises with Austria

Scotland manager Steve Clarke sympathises with Austria
© Reuters
The Austrians are without a host of German-based players because of quarantine rules.

Scotland manager Steve Clarke has expressed total sympathy with Austria for their selection issues ahead of their Hampden trip next week.

But Clarke insists Scotland made a very fair offer to switch their home World Cup qualifiers around.

Austria are set to be without Bayern Munich defender David Alaba and a host of other German-based players – there were 18 in their most recent squad – because of quarantine rules in their neighbouring country.

Austria decided against requesting a neutral venue or accepting Scotland's offer to switch fixtures because they hope to have a big crowd when Clarke's men visit their country in September.

"We have 100 per cent sympathy with the Austrians in the situation they find themselves in," Clarke said.

"And, to be fair to ourselves, I believe in discussions with UEFA and Austria, we offered to flip the fixtures, which was quite a fair offer because it would have meant we were starting with Austria and Israel away in a tough start.

"But the problem it gave Austria was three home games in March and three away games in September.

"I can see their reasoning, why they didn't want three games away in September, because we had the same last November. By the time we got to the Israel game, the third game in the road trip, the boys were pretty much emotionally and physically drained.

David Alaba shakes Paddy McNair's hand
David Alaba, right, is set to be unavailable for Austria (Florian Schrotter/PA)

"So I can understand why they've gone the way they've chosen to go.

"They must be confident that they can get a strong Austrian team on the pitch even without so many players from Germany."

Meanwhile, Clarke is hopeful Scotland will get to play Croatia and Czech Republic at Hampden in the Euros.

UEFA will take a decision on venues next month and the governing body has signalled a more hard-line approach to any countries which do not allow crowds.

The Scottish Government has not provided any assurances at this stage but there were signs of optimism as First Minister Nicola Sturgeon delivered an update on the route out of lockdown on Tuesday.

Outdoor events are scheduled to restart from May 17 with details on capacity limits to be confirmed in the next few weeks. And Sturgeon offered hope that life could return to some sort of normality during the summer.

Clarke said: "There seems to be a little bit more hope around the vaccinations. We seem to be getting on top of it that way.

"I got my first vaccination last week so I am in that process. No side effects, everything good.

"I would like to think there will be enough time for the Scottish Government to convince UEFA that there will be a crowd of sorts at Hampden. Will it be a full house? I don't think so.

"But hopefully we can meet the required amount to make it happen."

ID:439516: cacheID:439516:1false2false3false:QQ:: from db desktop :LenBod:restore:6544:
Restore Data
Share this article now:
Did you know...?
Southampton striker Che Adams pictured on January 23, 2021
Read Next:
Scotland call up Southampton's Che Adams for World Cup qualifiers
>

rhs 2.0
Todays Game Header Right
Premier League
Championship
Scottish Premiership
La Liga
Serie A
Bundesliga
Ligue 1
Eredivisie
Primeira Liga
League One
League Two
National League
National League North
National League South
Scottish Championship
Scottish League One
Scottish League Two
Turkish Super Lig
Belgian Pro League
Swiss Super League
Russian Premier League
Ukrainian Premier League
Norwegian Eliteserien
Swedish Allsvenskan
NIFL Premiership
Belarusian Premier League
Segunda Division
Serie B
2.Bundesliga
Ligue 2
Major League Soccer
Brasileiro
Copa Diego Maradona
Uruguayan Primera Division
Liga MX
J1 League
Premier League 2 - Div 1
International Friendlies
Women's Super League
Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Liverpool64201541114
2Manchester CityMan City64111211113
3Chelsea64111221013
4Manchester UnitedMan Utd6411135813
5Everton6411127513
6Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton540174312
7West Ham UnitedWest Ham6321138511
8Aston Villa631297210
9Brentford62318539
10Tottenham HotspurSpurs530236-39
11Watford621379-27
12Leicester CityLeicester6213710-37
13Arsenal520329-76
14Crystal Palace512258-35
15Southampton504146-24
16Wolverhampton WanderersWolves510425-33
17Newcastle UnitedNewcastle6033714-73
18Leeds UnitedLeeds6033614-83
19Burnley6024511-62
20Norwich CityNorwich6006216-140

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!