One Celtic star clamps critics but another a 5: Scotland player ratings vs Hungary in Euro 2024 sucker punch

Scotland suffered heartbreak vs Hungary at Euro 2024 with Celtic stars involved.

Scotland have been left heart-broken against Hungary, after being eliminated from Euro 2024 through a last-gasp 1-0 defeat.

Willie Orban hit the bar towards the end of a first half in which Steve Clarke’s side dominated possession, but didn’t possess much threat in front of goal. A whole hour had gone and Scotland had one attempt at goal all game - which was off target.

Barnabás Varga nasty injury had him stretchered off in worrying scenes, as tensions built over both side’s tournament hopes. Both sides threw hammer and tongs to find a winner but it was Kevin Csoboth who sunk Scotland with a 100th minute winner, the most heartbreaking of eliminations. Clarke’s side head home with one point from three games, who didn’t have a single shot on target on the final matchday.

It all came down to this. The gut-wrenching 5-1 hammering off hosts Germany had been and gone, with hope replacing shock after a 1-1 draw vs Switzerland. Win, and the last 16 frontier would likely be clinched.

A draw would perhaps be enough in one scenario, but head coach Clarke is not a man keen on leaving things to chance. His side started aggressive and on the front foot but chances were not coming thick and fast.

The Tartan Army who packed the stands for an emotional rendition of Flower of Scotland watched their side gain 68% of possession in the first 34 minutes, with zero shots to show for it. They had tamed the Hungarian threat but they had to pack more punch going forward. An Orban header of the bar proved ample warning of what not creating chances can lead to.

It was hard to be too critical of the work ethic and endeavour. The performance was comfortable but that bite that separates the best from the rest was needed. Che Adams was putting in a tireless shift but Clarke would perhaps have been having a glance to his 30+ goal striker in Lawrence Shankland as the Stuttgart night rumbled on.

A booking for Scott McTominay early doors in the second half drew another Scottish blow off the back of Kieran Tierney’s tournament-ending injury, with that enough to see him suspended for a possible last 16 tie. Absence for one reason or another had been a running theme for Scotland players in the build-up to the tournament and it started rearing its head in the midst of it.

A nasty smash between Angus Gunn, Celtic right-back Anthony Ralston and Varga left the latter stricken on the turf, forming a shield around him. He was stretchered off to rapturous applause before action continued. Hungary piled on the pressure with a couple of big chances but Gunn stood tall.

Armstrong was left claiming for a penalty after going tumbling in the box under an Orban challenge, but VAR was unmoved. Heartbreak would follow, as Scotland piled bodies forward in search of a winner, Hungary broke to score through Csoboth. It’s elimination for Clarke and co, with a wait for the knockout stages ongoing. Here’s how we rated the players, including the Celtic pair who started.

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