Scotland suffered a second defeat in the space of four days as they went down 3-1 to a slick Portugal side at Hampden Park.
The Scots had hoped to bounce back from their disastrous UEFA Nations League defeat to Israel on Thursday, and although it was an improved display by Alex McLeish’s side they fell to defeat courtesy of goals from Helder Costa, Eder and Bruma, with Steven Naismith netting a late consolation.
McLeish made six changes from the side that was humiliated in Israel, opting to shift from a 3-5-2 to a 4-4-2. Allan McGregor, Charlie Mulgrew, Kieran Tierney, Kevin McDonald, Johnny Russell and John Souttar dropped out, with Craig Gordon, Jack Hendry, James Forrest, Stuart Armstrong, Oli McBurnie and Aberdeen defender Scott McKenna drafted in.
Scotland made a promising start and nearly took the lead in bizarre fashion on 14 minutes, with goalkeeper Beto forced to make a fingertip save to prevent Sergio Oliveira’s header inadvertently finding the net from Forrest’s delivery from the right.
The home side continued to dictate, with Callum McGregor’s cross nodded wide by Steven Naismith, however Portugal began to show more threat, with slack defending from Hendry allowing Bruma in on goal, however the attacker saw his shot blocked wide by McKenna.
Naismith was unfortunate to see a header from another Forrest cross drift narrowly wide on 37 minutes, while at the other end Craig Gordon was called into action for the first time to make a fine beaten save to deny Eder.
Portugal’s breakthrough came a minute before the interval however, with Kevin Rodrigues beating Stephen O’Donnell before crossing for Costa to guide past Gordon from close range.
McKenna spurned a glorious opportunity to level on 54 minutes when he got on the end of McGinn’s corner, however he steered his header wide of the post.
The miss proved costly however, with Portugal putting the victory beyond doubt with a second goal on 73 minutes, as Eder got on the end of Renato Sanches’ sublime free kick to nod home.
The visitors sealed the win with a fine third goal on 84 minutes, with Bruma weaving past Graeme Shinnie before shooting high into the top corner.
Scotland grabbed a late consolation in stoppage time with Dons winger Gary Mackay-Steven setting up Naismith with a neat backheel, before the attacker provided a cushioned finish.