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Live Reporting

Colin Moffat

All times stated are UK

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  1. Post update

    That's enough from me. Like an awful lot of friendlies, the game at Hampden will not live long in the memory, but it's a useful warm-up act for Sunday.

    Best of luck for Sunday when Northern Ireland host Finland and Scotland take on Gibraltar at Hampden. Make sure you join us for coverage of those Euro 2016 qualifiers.

    Good night.

  2. Post update

    The BBC Radio Scotland team are busy debating what the formation will be against Gibraltar - and they don't see Gordon Strachan tinkering too much with his usual shape and going with two strikers. Full-backs Alan Hutton and Andrew Robertson were rested tonight and they are both fond of rampaging forward, so maybe those two will be prominent attackers at Hampden.

  3. Post update

    More from Scotland manager Gordon Strachan

    "I was delighted for Darren Fletcher. I thought he was terrific for the whole game.

    "[On the captaincy] I've got decisions to make, good ones..."

  4. Post update

    Scotland manager Gordon Strachan

    "I thought the first half hour was good for a friendly, we showed a good attitude. But the game wobbled and died a bit until the last 15 minutes. But we kept plugging away and doing the right things.

    "And to win the game and keep a clean sheet is good.

    "I got what I expected from the players. Some were better than others. We'll do some hard work on Friday and Saturday and I have a plan in mind for Sunday and we go into the game feeling good about ourselves."

  5. Post update

    And what about the Scotland captaincy? It was good to see Darren Fletcher back in the middle of the park and he was neat and tidy. Scott Brown, who was rested entirely tonight, perhaps offers more drive and do you need two deep-lying midfielders at home to Gibraltar?

  6. Post update

    Craig Gordon and Allan McGregor got a half each tonight. Does that mean David Marshall will get his place back on Sunday? Either way, the Scotland goalkeeper should not be too busy against Gibraltar, who are yet to score in Euro 2016 qualifying.

  7. Join the debate at #bbcscotfootball

    Ross McKenzie: "We go 1 nil down and our fans get louder. Best fans in Europe. #bbcscotfootball #GAWA"

  8. Post update

    Northern Ireland manager Michael O'Neill

    "When you make so many substitutions, you are continually changing markers from set-pieces. Under normal circumstances, I don't think we'd have lost that goal - and it's disappointing for Michael McGovern who had a good game.

    "We left seven or eight of our first team players out, so it's positive to get some of the boys more experience."

  9. Post update

    Managers always talk about fringe players forcing their way into the team in games like these. But it rarely works like that does it? Scotland boss Gordon Strachan is sure to call on experienced players such as Scott Brown and Alan Hutton on Sunday, while Steven Naismith is a certain starter. Of those on the periphery, Craig Forsyth was perhaps the stand-out at left-back.

  10. Post update

    Willie Miller

    Former Scotland defender

    "I thought the first half was exciting, it was played at a good tempo. But the game was spoiled a bit because Northern Ireland had little interest in getting forward. They defended with enthusiasm and worked hard off the ball but that approach must be a bit soul destroying in a friendly match."

  11. Post update

    Northern Ireland look forward to a home game with Finland on Sunday and the team will look very different at Windsor Park. Michael O'Neill's side are aiming to build on a great start to Euro 2016 qualifying and sit second in Group F after four matches.

  12. Post update

    Former Northern Ireland defender John O'Neill

    "That was a glorified practice game, as we expected. We'd rather have had a 0-0 than a 1-0 defeat. All eyes are now on Sunday - that is a big, big game. It's the first time we've been in with a genuine shout of qualification for a major finals for a long, long time."



    A win for Scotland ahead of Sunday's Euro 2016 qualifier with Gibraltar and it was just about deserved, with the hosts doing most of the pressing.

    The first half was lively, with Northern Ireland keeper Michael McGovern kept busy, but the second half was hard going, with lots of substitutions and nothing much to excite the small crowd at Hampden. Christophe Berra popped up with the late goal - a header from a corner.

  14. Post update

    Steven Naismith and Jordan Rhodes race forward against an exposed Northern Ireland defence but the Blackburn striker is off balance when he gets the ball and scuffs a shot straight at Michael McGovern.

  15. Post update

    We're getting an extra two minutes added. What about all the subs? Just kidding. Two more minutes is quite enough.

  16. Post update

    A nice way for Christophe Berra to celebrate his 29th cap. His last international goal came in February 2012 and tonight's takes his tally to three.

  17. Post update

    Willie Miller

    Former Scotland defender

    "The marking from Northern Ireland was a bit suspect there, a centre-back should not be getting a free header, but it was a good finish."

  18. GOAL


    Following a wee flurry from the visitors, Scotland win a corner and Christophe Berra is the unlikely goalscorer, nodding in a fizzing delivery from Matt Ritchie. Lee Hodson was guarding the post but could not alter his body shape in time to clear.

    Christophe Berra celebrates
  19. Post update

    A corner to Northern Ireland as Ikechi Anya blocks a shot and Allan McGregor flaps at Pat McCourt's delivery but there is no one in blue to profit.


    And another... Jonny Evans, who hasn't looked at all rusty, despite his domestic ban, makes way for Luke McCullough of Doncaster Rovers.

  21. Post update

    Willie Miller

    Former Scotland defender

    "The two Northern Ireland centre-backs have been outstanding. They communicate really well and they are strong."


    Guess what? Another change. Scotland right-back Steven Whittaker is off and Derby forward Johnny Russell is on.

  23. Text us on 80295

    Neil in Belfast: "Looks like we are saving any shots for the Finland game."

    Craig from Perth: "Scotland really need a bit a pace up top. Maybe someone like Stevie May."

    Rob from Dennistoun: "This game is crying out for a rock star, and that rock star is stevie ruddy may."


    Josh Magennis trots off after a good shift for the visitors and Wigan striker Billy McKay, formerly of Inverness CT, gets a taste of the action.

  25. Post update

    Steven Naismith peels away from his marker at a corner and his fizzing header flies straight into the hands of Michael McGovern. Moments later, the Northern Ireland keeper smothers a low strike from Matt Ritchie.

  26. Post update

    Scotland inject a bit of urgency into their passing as the ball is worked to Ikechi Anya in the penalty area. He dances one way, then the next, but can't squeeze his shot past the covering Lee Hodson.


    Northern Ireland introduce their skipper for the last 20 minutes, as Steven Davis takes over from Ben Reeves and Ryan McLaughlin is on for Oliver Norwood.

  28. Post update

    Josh Magennis is in the lone striker's role for Northern Ireland now and there is not a team-mate in sight as he bundles his way to the edge of the penalty area. The Kilmarnock forward decides to have a crack, and why not, but his angled drive does not trouble Allan McGregor.

  29. Post update

    The possession stats are still heavily weighted in Scotland's favour but the action has really dried up. Northern Ireland have plugged the gaps out wide and are simply lapping up the hopeful, long balls the hosts are relying on now.

    Paddy McNair and Ikechi Anya

    More changes from Scotland boss Gordon Strachan, with striker Jordan Rhodes back for the first time since November 2013. He replaces Steven Fletcher, while James Morrison is on for James McArthur.

  31. Text us on 80295

    James in Giffnock: "Scotland should be looking to be at least 4 up by this stage on Sunday."


    Just as I was praising Chris Baird, he's hooked, along with lone striker Will Grigg. Lee Hodson and Pat McCourt are the men coming on for Northern Ireland.

  33. Post update

    The home fans are just starting to get a bit restless as Scotland continue to boss the ball but without their earlier fluency. Much of that is down to how well the visitors are closing down. Chris Baird, winning his 70th cap, is doing a fine job sitting in front of the two central defenders.

  34. Join the debate at #bbcscotfootball

    Niall Murdoch on Twitter: "Let's get Stevie May and Jordan Rhodes on to bang in the goals #bbcscotfootball"

  35. CLOSE!

    Craig Forsyth breaks forward again to gather a pass from Steven Fletcher and delivers another excellent delivery which finds Steven Naismith lurking at the near post but the Everton forward sends a glancing header narrowly over.

  36. Post update

    With Northern Ireland sitting in, I guess this is good practice for Scotland, who take on Gibraltar on Sunday. Will the semi-pros from the Mediterranean be as hard to break down?

  37. KICK-OFF

    We're up and running again...


    Scotland make three changes at the break, with Steven Naismith, Christophe Berra and Allan McGregor on. I'm not sure keeper Craig Gordon touched the ball with his hands in the first half. Russell Martin and Shaun Maloney are the others making way.

    Ikechi Anya is still there. He must simply be a polite lad, shaking hands with the officials earlier.

  39. Join the debate at #bbcscotfootball

    Kieran on Twitter: "Passing too slow, should be experimenting with more youngsters in games like this #bbcscotfootball #gauld #Armstrong #future."

    What are NI fans making of the game so far?

  40. Text us on 80295

    Tatty from Hamilton: "James McArthur is a great player and famously does not shoot. His great strength is his solidity. He breaks up the play and drives it forward."

  41. Post update

    Former Northern Ireland defender John O'Neill

    "The fact that Michael McGovern is Northern Ireland's star player so far is a reflection of the play. It's a better game than I thought it would be. The players and the managers may be getting something out of it but there's not much in it for the rest of us and the fans.

    "Stuart Dallas has put in as good a left-sided performance as I've seen from a Northern Ireland player in a long time. On this display I'd be tempted to throw him in against Finland."

  42. Join the debate at #bbcscotootball

    Pepper Jack on Twitter: "Why are @ScottishFA trying to pass it into the net? This is going to be a dull 0-0. Usual tedious friendly outcome. Boring. #bbcscotfootball"

    Hotel&restaurant PR on Twitter: "#bbcscotfootball Playing with one up front at home! What is Strachan playing at and what does that say about Scotland's ambition?"

    Daniel Walford on Twitter: "#Scotland vs. #NorthernIreland; The sporting equivalent of a complete general anesthetic !! #SCONIR #bbcscotfootball"

  43. Post update

    Tommy Wright

    Former Northern Ireland goalkeeper

    "Michael McGovern is the main reason why it is still scoreless. Michael O'Neill will be the happier of the managers at half-time as Scotland have had the better chances."

  44. Post update

    Richard Wilson

    BBC Scotland at Hampden

    "Plenty of positives for Scotland manager Gordon Strachan in the opening half, in particular the performance of Ikechi Anya. Scotland have created half chances, against a well-ordered Northern Ireland side, but there is much for the home side to build on. A sharp, confident finisher could yet come to prominence in this game."

  45. Post update

    I'm guessing Ikechi Anya knows he is not coming back out for the second half since he was shaking hands with English referee Martin Atkinson on the way off. He won't be the only change at the interval, I'm sure.



    Northern Ireland's Ben Reeves (left) and James McArthur battle for possession

    Scotland have done most of the pressing but have not been able to find a way past Northern Ireland goalkeeper Michael McGovern, who made a couple of useful early saves.

  47. Post update

    Shaun Maloney slides a lovely reverse pass through for Steven Fletcher but out comes Michael McGovern to make a good blocking save. The Hamilton keeper has looked very assured this evening.

  48. Text us on 80295

    Anonymous: "Nice cap doffing to history with the Blue Kit for NI. Ireland's original sporting colours. Looks good."

    Anonymous: "Re Scotland shirt; I am guessing it's a nod to the Scotland shirt used occasionally in the late 1880's & early 1900's. Something to do with the Earl of Rosebery. Shocked wee Pat Nevin didn't know that!"

    Do include your name. We like to credit these pearls of wisdom.

  49. Post update

    Scotland full-back Craig Forsyth drives an excellent ball across goal from the left and Steven Fletcher gets his legs in a tangle attempting to touch it in. An offside flag is raised, so the miss is not quite as bad as it might have been.

  50. Post update

    A much-changed Northern Ireland team is looking more comfortable now as they find their shape and the hosts are finding it more difficult to find gaps to exploit.

  51. Post update

    Northern Ireland striker Will Grigg has been pretty isolated so far and the crowd jeer cruelly as he attempts to gather a long ball over the top, only to kick the ball back into his own face. Ouch!

    Will Grigg
  52. Post update

    Willie Miller

    Former Scotland defender

    "The pace of the game has been excellent. There's lots going on and the signs have been positive for Scotland."

  53. Join the debate at #bbcscotfootball

    ash mccutcheon on Twitter: "#bbcscotfootball good so far kept ball well annoying that it's still 0:0 should be 2:0 Scotland Steven Fletcher off at halftime."

  54. Post update

    Scotland come again, with Ikechi Anya inevitably involved, poking the ball on for Steven Fletcher to have a dig from the edge of the box. It's firmly struck but the shot is gathered well by Michael McGovern.

  55. Post update

    Ikechi Anya pounces on a stray pass from Josh Magennis and turns on the after-burners again before rolling the ball into the path of Shaun Maloney, who can only blaze a dreadful, first-time shot high into the Glasgow sky.

  56. Post update

    Richard Wilson

    BBC Scotland at Hampden

    "Impressive passages of play from Scotland. Matt Ritchie has shown promise turning into his left foot, while the quick and busy Ikechi Anya has the beating of Paddy McNair, the Northern Ireland full-back. If the home side can take advantage of their wide players, they can turn possession into chances."

  57. Post update

    Daniel Lafferty lumps the ball forward and there is hesitancy in Scotland's central defence, allowing Chris Brunt a sight at goal, but Gordon Greer recovers to make the block.

  58. Post update

    James McArthur turns up in a central position this time as Scotland counter at pace. His pass sends Ikechi Anya scurrying into the box but the final shot is wretched, skewing away from goal.

  59. Post update

    James McArthur slings in a cross from the right as Northern Ireland defender Daniel Lafferty sends a back-heel in his direction. The ball is just too high for Scotland striker Steven Fletcher and Michael McGovern punches clear.

  60. Post update

    Willie Miller

    Former Scotland defender

    "Ikechi Anya is on fire. He's going on the outside, then cutting inside. The Northern Ireland left-back, Aaron Hughes, just doesn't know how to handle him."

  61. Post update

    Ikechi Anya has been very lively for Scotland in the opening 15 minutes, this time sending a dipping strike a yard or two wide from 20 yards.

  62. Post update

    Josh Magennis drives forward to prompt a Northern Ireland attack and then pops up on the right edge of the box to nod the ball into the path of Oliver Norwood but the Reading midfielder balloons a first-time shot high and wide.

  63. Text us on 80295

    Anonymous: "Loud music and fireworks, is that the extent of the SFA blue sky thinking! Pathetic, open a bar and give us a night out. Is it any wonder the crowds are low, we need a new SFA!"

  64. Post update

    Michael McGovern makes another smart save, getting down low to tip away a Ikechi Anya strike as Darren Fletcher works the ball out to the Watford wing-back from a corner.

  65. Post update

    This time Scotland come down the right flank, with Matt Ritchie cutting back on his left and delivering a deep cross, which is just too high for Shaun Maloney who stretches to send a looping header onto the roof of the net.


    Scotland winger Ikechi Anya darts behind the visiting defence and gets to the byline to cuts it back for Steven Fletcher. The striker's first effort is blocked then he fires off a sharp strike, forcing Michael McGovern to push the ball over with both hands. Good save.

  67. Post update

    A loose ball out of the Scottish defence from Russell Martin is gathered by Stuart Dallas and the Brentford man darts forward to deliver a cross into the box but cannot find a team-mate.

  68. KICK-OFF

    Scotland get the game started...

  69. Post update

    The teams and supporters join in for a minute's applause in memory of the late Dave Mackay; a real Scotland legend.

  70. Post update

    The nations last met in the Nations Cup competition in 2011, with Scotland cruising to a 3-0 win in Dublin, while the most recent Hampden clash was a drab 0-0 in 2008, when Allan McGregor saved David Healy's penalty to deny the visitors.

  71. Join the debate at #bbcscotfootball

    Alasdair Muir on Twitter: "2-1 Scotland #bbcscotfootball"

    What do you reckon? Will we get goals or will it be an easy-going friendly low on thrills?

  72. Post update

    The small band of Northern Ireland fans are making a right old racket, generating more noise than the home support. There are a lot of empty seats at Hampden as we prepare for the national anthems.

  73. Post update


    Do not adjust your sets... Northern Ireland are playing in blue, with the hosts in white, with touches of pink and yellow.

  74. Post update

    Time for a quick stat-attack, and it doesn't make good reading for fans of the visitors. Northern Ireland have gone 21 friendly games, home and away, without a win. They have lost 16 games in that sequence and scored just five goals, three of those in the same game.

  75. Post update

    Richard Wilson

    BBC Scotland at Hampden

    "Gordon Strachan providing opportunities for the likes of James McArthur and Craig Forsyth to play their way into the starting line-up for the Gibraltar game on Sunday. This will be a friendly with a competitive edge, since so many of the Scots and Northern Irish players work with or compete against each other in domestic football. It's a chance for Scotland to hone their attacking instincts, and Matt Ritchie's debut will draw a lot of attention since he has led the way with assists in the Championship for Bournemouth."

  76. Join the debate at #bbcscotfootball

    Stoke and Scotland midfielder Charlie Adam on Twitter: "A win tonight for @ScottishFA would set us up for Sunday's game. Good luck."

  77. Post update

    And there is a long list of Scottish connections in the Northern Ireland squad. Current players are goalkeepers Alan Mannus (St Johnstone) and Michael McGovern (Hamilton), as well as front men Josh Magennis (Kilmarnock) and Niall McGinn (Aberdeen).

    Names who have sampled Scottish football in the past are one-time Rangers pair Steven Davis and Kyle Lafferty, ex-Celtic winger Paddy McCourt, and recently departed Inverness CT striker Billy McKay.

    Others who were in Scotland are Roy Carroll, who was briefly on the books at Rangers, and Daniel Lafferty who was at Celtic and Ayr United.

  78. Post update

    Northern Ireland manager Michael O'Neill is certainly familiar with the territory. He lives in Edinburgh and spent a large chunk of his career playing in Scotland, with Dundee United and Hibernian among others.

  79. Post update

    Scotland boss Gordon Strachan started his international career in a 1-0 defeat at Windsor Park in 1980 and captained his country to a 1-0 success against tonight's visitors at Hampden on his penultimate appearance in 1992.

    Asked yesterday, if he had any fond memories of his four meetings with Northern Ireland in his 50 caps, the former Celtic manager was typically blunt: "Not really. I never played well in any of those games. I wasn't very good on my debut and I nearly got Scotland knocked out of the 1982 World Cup when I gave the ball away and Asa Hartford made a clearance off the line."

  80. Post update

    Scotland's Mark Reynolds (centre) speaks with Northern Ireland's Niall McGinn (left) and Josh Magennis.

    Scotland's Mark Reynolds (centre) finds time for a quick chat with Northern Ireland's Niall McGinn (left) and Josh Magennis, his present and former team-mate and Aberdeen.

  81. Post update

    Scotland forward Steven Naismith

    "It will be more than just a friendly, with it being against a country so close to home and with a lot of the players knowing each other and playing against each other. So there will be more of an edge to it."

    The Everton forward is another regular starter given a breather...

  82. Post update

    Northern Ireland captain Steven Davis

    Northern Ireland captain Steven Davis

    "I was lucky enough to play at Hampden quite a few times [for Rangers] and had some success there so I'm looking forward to it.

    "It's a good friendly for both ourselves and Scotland. I expect the game to have a bit of an edge because both sets of players are used to playing against each other at various stages of their careers.

    "The mentality of both sets of players is always to give 100% and I think it's good preparation for the Finland game."

    The Southampton midfielder starts among the substitutes tonight, with Jonny Evans leading the team.

  83. Post update

    Scotland's Darren Fletcher

    Darren Fletcher reclaims the captain's armband for Scotland, with Scott Brown rested. The midfielder is enjoying regular game time at West Brom following a frustrating period on the fringes at Old Trafford.

    Who will lead the team when Gordon Strachan is picking his strongest side?

  84. Post update

    There are lots of substitutes and I would not be surprised to see the managers use their full allowance. Northern Ireland trio Kyle Lafferty, Niall McGinn and Corry Evans are nursing minor injuries and are unlikely to be risked.

  85. Post update

    Teenage defender Paddy McNair earns his first Northern Ireland cap. The 19-year-old has been given a taste of top-team action at Manchester United this season.

    He is joined at the back by club-mate Jonny Evans, who is currently serving a six-match domestic suspension.

    Brentford's Stuart Dallas and MK Dons' Ben Reeves each win a second cap in midfield.


    Scotland: Gordon, Whittaker, Forsyth, Greer, Martin, McArthur, D Fletcher, Ritchie, S Fletcher, Maloney, Anya.

    Northern Ireland: McGovern, McNair, Hughes, Evans, Lafferty, Baird, Norwood, Magennis, Reeves, Dallas, Grigg.

  87. Post update

    Managers Gordon Strachan and Michael O'Neill will experiment with a few fringe players this evening, with Bournemouth winger Matt Ritchie making his Scotland debut after a first call-up and Derby left-back Craig Forsyth getting a first start.

    Goalkeeper Craig Gordon starts for the first time since 2010 following his remarkable comeback from nearly two years out through injury.

  88. Post update

    At the weekend, Northern Ireland are at home to Finland, aiming to build on a fabulous start to their campaign. Impressive wins in Hungary and Greece have propelled Michael O'Neill's team to second place in Group F. Scotland have lost just once in their opening four qualifiers - away to World Cup winners Germany - and will be confident of taking three more points from minnows Gibraltar in Glasgow.

  89. Post update

    Good evening and welcome to our coverage of Scotland v Northern Ireland from Hampden Park. This friendly is the warm-up act for both sides, who will be in Euro 2016 qualifying action on Sunday.