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Steve Clarke praises players despite late penalty denying Scotland seventh consecutive win

Scotland manager Steve Clarke greets Nathan Patterson during the friendly against Poland.
Scotland manager Steve Clarke greets Nathan Patterson during the friendly against Poland.

Scotland manager Steve Clarke praised his players following their 1-1 draw against Poland at Hampden.

Kieran Tierney’s second half header looked set to make it seven wins in a row for the national team before a controversial late penalty from Krzystof Piatek earned the visitors a draw.

The friendly between the sides was arranged after Scotland’s World Cup play-off against Ukraine was postponed.

The late penalty stopped Scotland recording a seventh consecutive win for the first time since 1927.

Clarke felt it was a worthwhile exercise for his players, despite the late penalty depriving the national team of a morale-boosting win.

Krzysztof Piatek of Poland celebrates after scoring a penalty to make it 1-1.

Clarke said: “I’m pleased.

“I thought we were good.

“After such a long break I thought the players were at it again.

“We worked on all the things we speak about all the time. Our shape was good.

“I thought the team played well.

“We had some good possession and created some good chances, especially in the first half.

“Maybe not so many in the second half but we got the goal from a good set play.

“The boys know their job and we have been consistent with the way we play.

“We got some good work out of the players.”

Kieran Tierney raises a fist as he celebrates putting Scotland into a 1-0 lead.

Scotland will travel to Vienna to face Austria in another friendly on Tuesday.

The Austrians saw their hopes of reaching this year’s World Cup in Qatar end with a 2-1 defeat by Wales in Cardiff.

Scotland now know their path to Qatar 2022 with a showdown with Wales in Cardiff lying in wait if they can beat Ukraine in their World Cup play-off semi-final.

Clarke said: “There will be some changes to the starting line-up. You have to be mindful that it is two friendlies.

“We want to keep the unbeaten run going but a lot of players have a heavy workload with their clubs and I want to be as fair as I can.”

On the penalty decision, Clarke said: “I think it is a penalty decision for a friendly game and that is probably the best way to leave it.

“We wanted to keep the winning run going.

“Seven wins in a row sounds better than six wins and a draw.

“But it is not the end of the world.”

Poland strike late to deny Scotland seventh straight win in 1-1 draw at Hampden Park

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