Scotland 1-1 Israel: Nations League campaign begins with draw

Israel came back from a goal down to take a point at Hampden.

Scotland 1-1 Israel: Nations League campaign begins with draw SNS

Scotland and Israel have drawn 1-1 in their Nations League match at Hampden.

Ryan Christie put Steve Clarke’s side ahead from the penalty spot but Eran Zahavi brought the visitors level in the 73rd minute.

The sides were meeting in the opening game of their group, one month before they face each other in the Euro 2020 play-off semi-final. Both were back in action after a long lay-off due to the coronavirus pandemic and playing their first international in ten months.

Scotland boss Clarke was looking to build on a three-match winning run from before the break and he named an experimental team. Kieran Tierney and Scott McTominay joined Scott McKenna in a three-man defence and Lyndon Dykes made his international debut as striker.

In a national stadium that was empty of fans, the teams took a while to settle and there was little goalmouth action in the first half. With the break drawing near Israel had a clear opportunity when Munas Dubbur had a clear header but put it straight at Scotland keeper David Marshall.

Scotland were ahead moments later. Dykes won a knock’down in the area and John McGinn latched on to it just before Eytan Tibi, who fouled the midfielder. From the spot, Christie hit his penalty high past Ofir Marciano.

The second half saw Scotland retreat to defend their lead and they paid the price for a lapse at the back with 17 minutes to go. Zahavi burst into the box to latch on to a flick from Dabbur and half-volleyed past Marshall.

Neither side could find a winner and were forced to settle for a point each.

Scotland now travel to play Czech Republic on Monday.

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