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tartan torture Andy Robertson gives his verdict as Scotland suffering agonising start to Euro 2020

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David Marshall of Scotland fails to save Czech Republic's second goal scored by Patrik Schick (Photo by Andy Buchanan - Pool/Getty Images)

David Marshall of Scotland fails to save Czech Republic's second goal scored by Patrik Schick (Photo by Andy Buchanan - Pool/Getty Images)

David Marshall of Scotland fails to save Czech Republic's second goal scored by Patrik Schick (Photo by Andy Buchanan - Pool/Getty Images)

Scotland’s return to a major finals for the first time in 23 years began with a deflating 2-0 defeat by the Czech Republic at Hampden Park.

In front of 9,847 fans – most of them Scots – both sides had chances in their opening Euro 2020 fixture before striker Patrik Schick headed the Czechs in front three minutes before the interval.

Schick doubled that lead in the 52nd minute with a sensational effort from just over the halfway line which beat keeper David Marshall.

After the pre-tournament hype, it was a dispiriting anti-climax for the Scots, who could not get control of the game albeit they passed up several opportunities.

"It’s hard to put your finger on it just now," said deflated Scotland and Liverpool full-back Andy Roberston. "Everyone in the country wanted to get off to a good start. We were confident, excited, and it comes down to not taking our chances.

"You can't say we’ve not created, we’ve had some really, really good chances that we should have done better with. If you do better on that, then it’s a different game.

"It’s a tough lesson for us that at the highest level, at the best tournaments, you have to take your chances. Czech Republic did that, we didn’t."

Scotland head coach Steve Clarke suggested his side didn't make the most of their openings, on a day when a moment of magic from Schick took the game away from them.

"It was quite an even game, not much in it," said Clark. "They were more clinical. Losing a goal off a second-phase set-play was disappointing and the boy’s had a wonderful strike from a shot from Jack Hendry that fell perfectly for him. When we had our chances, we didn’t quite take them.

"It’s a good learning experience. We didn’t come here to learn but you still have to lean your lessons and take your chances when they present themselves, make sure you stay in the game and get something from it.

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Scotland fans sit dejected at the Fan Zone in Glasgow (Ian Rutherford/PA)

Scotland fans sit dejected at the Fan Zone in Glasgow (Ian Rutherford/PA)

Scotland fans sit dejected at the Fan Zone in Glasgow (Ian Rutherford/PA)

"We played some good stuff, could have been a little braver on the ball first-half. It was quite a tense first half, not a lot of space. Just the way the game panned out, both teams nullified each other for the first 45 minutes.

"We didn’t work enough to get behind them in the first half. Lots to learn for everybody."

Steve Clarke’s men will immediately start preparing for the trip to Wembley to play England on Friday night before their final group game against Croatia next week, but already their task looks ominous.

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Scotland have never qualified for the knockout stages of a major tournament and will have to find something special to end that poor record.

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