Scotland’s dismay as Steve Clarke’s men DRAW with Switzerland – with all now to play for with the squad just one game away from crashing out the Euros

The Tartan Army is still alive and kicking after Scotland kept their Euros dream alive with a 1-1 draw against Switzerland – with all now to play for in their third and final group game.

Kilt-wearing supporters were in full voice once again in Cologne as Scotland got their first points of Euro 2024 – five days after they lost their opening game in a 5-1 mauling to hosts Germany in Munich.

Scotland, who must beat Hungary in their final game on Sunday to have any hope of advancing, came straight out the blocks and made their early pressure count after just 13 minutes as Scott McTominay’s deflected strike put Steve Clarke’s side 1-0 up.

The Tartan Army erupted at the Cologne Stadium and across fan zones in the city – where around 60,000 fans travelled to from Munich for the crunch clash. Those unable to make the trip to Germany packed out fan zones and pubs back home. 

But the celebrations were short-lived as former Liverpool star Xherdan Shaqiri silenced the Scots by levelling the score with a stunning curling strike into the top left corner after 26 minutes. 

With just one point on the board from two games, reaching the knockout stages of a major tournament for the first time in their history looks like an uphill task now for Scotland. 

Given their poor goal difference, it is virtually impossible for Scotland to overtake second-place Switzerland, who have four points and play Germany next. 

The Scotland dream is still alive, however, as the team that finishes third with the most points will qualify as the best third-placed side. No team has failed to progress as one of the best third-placed teams with four points, which Scotland would have if they beat Hungary.

Kilt-wearing Scotland fans bring the atmosphere at the Cologne Stadium against Switzerland

Scotland's hopes of advancing will go down to the final game after they failed to win

Scotland’s hopes of advancing will go down to the final game after they failed to win

It was too hard to watch for some fans back home in Glasgow

It was too hard to watch for some fans back home in Glasgow

Scotland fans embrace at the fan zone in Cologne as they managed to get a 1-1 draw with Switzerland

Scotland fans embrace at the fan zone in Cologne as they managed to get a 1-1 draw with Switzerland

Scotland fans celebrate at the Glasgow Fan Zone after Scotland go 1-0 up in Germany

Scotland fans celebrate at the Glasgow Fan Zone after Scotland go 1-0 up in Germany

The Tartan Army were still in full spirits after Scotland's 5-1 mauling against Germany on Friday

The Tartan Army were still in full spirits after Scotland’s 5-1 mauling against Germany on Friday

Three friends dressed head to toe in Scotland merchandise are seen cheering their country on

Three friends dressed head to toe in Scotland merchandise are seen cheering their country on

Fans watching back home in Scotland wave their flags and celebrate after going 1-0 up

Fans watching back home in Scotland wave their flags and celebrate after going 1-0 up

Scotland fans appear dejected after Switzerland's Xherdan Shaqiri equalises

Scotland fans appear dejected after Switzerland’s Xherdan Shaqiri equalises 

After that, it comes down to goal difference, goals scored and wins. 

Moments after Shaqiri’s equaliser, Dan Ndoye thought he had put Switzerland 2-1 up but thankfully for Scotland, the goal was ruled out for offside. 

Midway through the second half, the stadium went eerily quiet as left-back Kieran Tierney was stretched off in visible pain – with Scottish fans holding their breath over how serious it will turn out to be.

In the 66th minute, Grant Hanley thought he had regained Scotland’s lead but his header crashed against the post, prompting desperate fans to turn away in disbelief. 

Rejuvenated by the huge chance, the Tartan Army – led by kilt-wearing fans swinging their pints around – roared their country on into the final 20 minutes. 

With less than 10 minutes to go, Breel Embolo stormed through on goal and thought he had put Switzerland 2-1 up with a sumptuous chip – but again it was ruled out for offside. 

In the last minute, Switzerland nearly snatched all three points but Amdouni’s header from just a few yards out went narrowly wide of the post.

In stoppage time, Scotland had their own chance to win as Andy Roberston’s cross looked as though it was about to be tapped home until Switzerland defender Manuel Akanji intervened.

Ahead of kick-off, thousands of Scottish fans brought Cologne to a stand-still as they marched through the city ahead of the crunch game.

Led by 100 or so pipers and drummers, more than 10,000 of the Tartan Army marched the final 1.7km to the Cologne Stadium through quiet leafy streets with bemused locals hanging out of windows to photograph the spectacle. 

Scott McTominay celebrates after scoring the first goal via a deflection

Scott McTominay celebrates after scoring the first goal via a deflection

Xherdan Shaqiri equalised shortly after with a sublime strike into the top corner

Xherdan Shaqiri equalised shortly after with a sublime strike into the top corner

Switzerland fans try to match Scotland's Tartan Army with their crazy outfits on Wednesday night

Switzerland fans try to match Scotland’s Tartan Army with their crazy outfits on Wednesday night

Pints are seen being launched into the air after Scotland went ahead in the first half

Pints are seen being launched into the air after Scotland went ahead in the first half

A Scotland fan reacts after Xherdan Shaqiri equalised for Switzerland in the second half

A Scotland fan reacts after Xherdan Shaqiri equalised for Switzerland in the second half

Scotland fans watching at fan zones at home were desperate for the country to recover from their defeat

Scotland fans watching at fan zones at home were desperate for the country to recover from their defeat

Fans of Scotland celebrate the team's opening goal

Fans of Scotland celebrate the team’s opening goal

Kilt-wearing fans embrace one another after Scotland went ahead in the first half

Kilt-wearing fans embrace one another after Scotland went ahead in the first half

A Scottish fan poses in the stands in the national jersey ahead of kick-off

A Scottish fan poses in the stands in the national jersey ahead of kick-off

Switzerland and Scotland fans in the stands during the UEFA Euro 2024 Group A match at the Cologne Stadium

Switzerland and Scotland fans in the stands during the UEFA Euro 2024 Group A match at the Cologne Stadium

Some brave Scotland fans took their shirts off amid the cold and rainy weather in Germany

Some brave Scotland fans took their shirts off amid the cold and rainy weather in Germany

Scotland fans back home hold a cardboard cut out of Steve Clarke at a fan zone

Scotland fans back home hold a cardboard cut out of Steve Clarke at a fan zone

The parade had been sanctioned by German police with officials even dotting the mile-long route with temporary toilets.

Officials estimate some 200,000 Scots are in the country for the Euros and it is thought around 60,000 made the 300-mile journey from Munich to Cologne after witnessing the hosts maul Steve Clarke’s men 5-1 on Friday. 

Scotland are facing another early exit, having failed to reach the knockout rounds in 11 previous major tournaments. 

But judging by the scenes in the riverside city today, the Tartan Army are not letting their team’s predicament spoil their fun.

Videos showed jigging and singing fans letting off blue flares in the Alter Markt, or Old Market – including one child who was surrounding by a group of men singing the Tartan Army’s ‘super John McGinn’ song in tribute to the country’s Aston Villa midfielder.

Scotland fans bring the noise in Cologne

Scotland fans bring the noise in Cologne

The pints were flowing as the Tartan Army descended on Cologne

The pints were flowing as the Tartan Army descended on Cologne

Kilt-wearing supporters packed the steps of the city’s famous cathedral more than seven hours before kick-off.

In scenes reminiscent of last Friday’s events in Munich – when the Tartan Army forced the closure of Munich’s Marianplatz fan zone ahead of the tournament’s opening game between Germany and Scotland – the main square in Cologne’s old town was also temporarily closed due to overcrowding.

Torrential downpours and storm warnings had made for a miserable start in the city with fan zones closed on Tuesday.

But as the weather took a turn for the better, there was no stopping of the die-hard supporters who turned out in their thousands for the organised Fan Walk.

Some 10,000 had tickets for the clash at the 50,000-capacity stadium with the rest crowding into the Heumarkt Fan Zone, which can take in 7,500 supporters, and the free Tanzbrunnen public viewing area, which caters for 12,500 people. 

The city also set up a third zone for ticketless fans in a city park by the Rhein in preparation for the onslaught of visitors.

The area, covering 30,000 square metres and big enough to take in 50,000 football supporters, has three large screens and a number of smaller ones, and it will also be open for England supporters for Tuesday’s game against Slovenia.

Scotland are taking part in only their second major tournament since the 1998 World Cup in France, having previously competed in the Covid-delayed Euro 2020 finals.

Dozens of pipers kicked-off the organised march this afternoon

Dozens of pipers kicked-off the organised march this afternoon

Scotland fans have been in good spirits on the streets of Cologne despite last Friday's thumping 5-1 defeat to host nation Germany in Euro 2024's opening game

Scotland fans have been in good spirits on the streets of Cologne despite last Friday’s thumping 5-1 defeat to host nation Germany in Euro 2024’s opening game

This Scottish fan was among those getting on well with Switzerland supporters ahead of the two sides' Group A clash in the city's RheinEnergieStadion this evening

This Scottish fan was among those getting on well with Switzerland supporters ahead of the two sides’ Group A clash in the city’s RheinEnergieStadion this evening

Scotland followers wearing appropriate face paint posed ahead of the crunch 8pm kick-off

Scotland followers wearing appropriate face paint posed ahead of the crunch 8pm kick-off

Rain threatened to dampen the mood of supporters attending this UEFA Fan Zone in Berlin

Rain threatened to dampen the mood of supporters attending this UEFA Fan Zone in Berlin

Tartan Army followers including many wearing kilts are seen outside Cologne Cathedral

Tartan Army followers including many wearing kilts are seen outside Cologne Cathedral

Kilt-wearing fans wave a Scotland fag as the Tartan Army took over Cologne earlier

Kilt-wearing fans wave a Scotland fag as the Tartan Army took over Cologne earlier

Fans began arriving in numbers in the city on Tuesday, with many in kilts seen dancing topless and singing the fans’ roster of chants.

It is almost impossible to board a train or tram in any major German city without being in the company of a Scot over the past week. 

Asked whether there was anyone left at home, Ferry, whose son has joined him for his first tour, quipped: ‘My wife! She has to work.’

‘Win, lose or draw the party will continue,’ Ferry added. ‘You won’t get rid of us that easily! It’s been magnificent so far. Everywhere we go it’s been a party and fans of other countries have been brilliant. Even the Austrians were singing No Scotland No Party with us the other night.’

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