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

Sports Mole previews Sunday's International Friendlies clash between Luxembourg and Scotland, including predictions, team news and possible lineups.

With just over a week until they kick off their Euro 2020 campaign, Scotland travel to Luxembourg for their final international friendly on Sunday.

The Tartan Army are unbeaten in each of their last four matches across all competitions, while the Red Lions have won one of their last eight games on home soil.


Match preview

Scotland's Kevin Nisbet celebrates scoring against the Netherlands on June 2, 2021© Reuters

Scotland began their preparations for their first major tournament since 1998 in positive fashion, after securing an impressive 2-2 draw against the Netherlands on Wednesday evening, in a game played behind closed doors at the Estadio Algarve.

The Tartan Army broke the deadlock through defender Jack Hendry, who drove in his first international goal after 11 minutes, before Memphis Depay equalised just six minutes later.

Substitute Kevin Nisbet then tapped in from close range to score his first goal for the national side just after the hour mark, and just as the Scots looked like they were to hold on for a famous win, a brilliant free-kick from Depay levelled the scores in the 89th minute.

Nevertheless, manager Steve Clarke was pleased that his depleted side produced a "good performance" and feels collectively they are "getting better" game by game.

Scotland midfielder John Fleck had tested positive for coronavirus earlier in the week, which forced him and six other squad members into self-isolation.

Clarke still named a strong side for their match with the Netherlands, which showed their mettle and proved that they can be competitive on the European stage.

The Scots have now lost just two of their last 15 international matches across all competitions and head into their clash with Luxembourg having won three and drawn one of their four meetings against them.

Luxembourg's Gerson Rodrigues celebrates scoring their first goal on March 27, 2021© Reuters

Unlike Scotland, Luxembourg will not be heading to Euro 2020, but will still be looking to claim a victory on home soil this Sunday before they return to action in September.

Their most recent international match saw the Red Lions narrowly lose 1-0 away in Norway, with Borussia Dortmund star Erling Braut Haaland scoring a 92nd-minute winner, one of just two attempts that managed to hit the target in the entire game.

It has been nearly 110 years since Luxembourg played their first ever international match, losing 4-1 against France in 1911. During this period, they have only ever faced Scotland on four occasions, losing their most recent encounter 2-1 in November 2012.

Luc Holtz's side have shown signs of improvement over the last year, particularly in a recent game against the Republic of Ireland on March 27, in which they claimed a 1-0 victory, with Gerson Rodrigues scoring an 85th minute winner at the Aviva Stadium.

Just three days later, Luxembourg came close to causing a huge upset against the current European Championship holders Portugal, when Rodrigues again scored the opening goal, before strikes from Diogo Jota, Cristiano Ronaldo and Joao Palhinha ensured the Selecao avoided an embarrassing loss to a nation ranked 96th in the world by FIFA.

The Red Lions will be looking to continue their gradual rise on the international stage with a positive result at the Stade Josy Barthel, and are sure to put up a fight against Scotland on Sunday.

Luxembourg form (all competitions):
  • L
  • D
  • L
  • W
  • L
  • L

Scotland form (all competitions):
  • L
  • L
  • D
  • D
  • W
  • D


Team News

Scotland's Che Adams celebrates scoring against the Faroe Islands on March 31, 2021© Reuters

Six of the seven Scotland players who have been self-isolating – David Marshall, Stephen O'Donnell, Nathan Patterson, Grant Hanley, John McGinn and Che Adams – have returned to first-team training and will be available to feature this weekend, however Fleck remains in self-isolation at their training camp in Alicante.

Winger Ryan Fraser was an injury doubt for the match with the Netherlands in midweek but was able to come off the bench for the final 30 minutes and will be in contention to play on Sunday.

After scoring against the Dutch, Nisbet could be handed a start up front alongside either Lyndon Dykes or Adams, while Scott McTominay – who was an unused substitute – could be given a start in either central midfield or as part of the back three.

As for Luxembourg, 21-year-old winger Vincent Thill has been unable to make the squad during the international break, having missed the final part of the season for Portuguese side Nacional through injury.

However, his older brothers Olivier Thill and Sebastien Thill could both feature in midfield, with the latter brought into the starting lineup at the expense of Danel Sinani.

Striker Daniel da Mota, who received his 100th international cap for the Red Lions in midweek, is likely to partner Rodrigues up front.

Luxembourg possible starting lineup:
Moris; Da Graca, Jans, Mahmutovic, Carlson, Pinto; S. Thill, Martins Pereira, O. Thill; Da Mota, Rodrigues

Scotland possible starting lineup:
Marshall; Hanley, Cooper, Tierney; O'Donnell, Gilmour, McGinn, McGregor, Robertson; Adams, Nisbet


SM words green background

We say: Luxembourg 0-2 Scotland

With little riding on this fixture for Luxembourg, they can play without any real pressure, while Scotland will be hoping they can head into Euro 2020 on a high with a win on Sunday.

The hosts may prove to be a challenging opponent and difficult to break down, but we feel that the Tartan Army should have enough quality to find the net and claim a victory.



Top tip

Our expert tipster partners at Sporita.com are predicting under 3.5 goals in this match. Click here to find out what else they are predicting for this game and for more of their tried-and-tested football tips.Under 3.5:data


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How you voted: Luxembourg vs Scotlvs

Luxembourg
13.8%
Draw
13.8%
Scotland
72.3%
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Sheffield United midfielder John Fleck pictured in September 2020
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Monday's key events


ATHLETICS
· There are no Brits in the women's 100m hurdles final, but Puerto Rico's Jasmine Camacho-Quinn, fresh from breaking the Olympic record in the semis, will hope to pip world record holder Kendra Harrison to gold (3.50am)
· The women's 5000m final also has no Team GB representation, but two-time world champion Hellen Obiri of Kenya will be looking to add an Olympic gold to her list of honours (1.40pm)

SAILING
· The women's skiff 49er FX (6.33am) and men's skiff 49er (7.33am) come to their conclusion, with Team GB involved in both medal races

FOOTBALL
· A place in the women's gold medal match is up for grabs, starting with an all-North American semi-final between United States and Canada (9am)
· Australia, who edged past Team GB's in a seven-goal quarter-final thriller, take on Sweden in the second semi-final (12pm)

CYCLING
· The track cycling schedule gets underway, with Team GB holding a particular interest in the team pursuit qualifying. Laura Kenny is part of the women's team (7.54am), while the men's team includes Ed Clancy (9.02am)

ARTISTIC GYMNASTICS
· The Gadirova twins Jessica and Jennifer will both take part in the women's floor final as they look to add to their team bronze (9.57am)

WEIGHTLIFTING
· Newly-crowned European champion Emily Campbell flies the flag for Great Britain in the women's +87kg, but faces stiff competition for medals from China's Li Wenwen and New Zealand's Laurel Hubbard (11.50am)

HOCKEY
· The women's hockey quarter-finals begin, with Team GB last up against Spain (1pm)

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