Euro 2020: England limp to dour draw against gritty Scotland

England's ambitions to be crowned kings of Europe got a cold dose of reality, as they were held to a 0-0 draw by a gutsy Scotland side in a Euro 2020 'Battle of Britain' on Saturday (NZ time).

Victory for Gareth Southgate's England side in the eagerly-awaited Group D clash at a rain-swept Wembley Stadium would have sealed a place in the last 16 but they produced a nervous performance against the Scots, who kept their own hopes alive.

Scotland's Tartan Army had swept south into London for the first match against the Auld Enemy in a tournament finals since England's 2-0 Wembley win at Euro '96.

They could have headed back across the border savouring an historic victory, with Steve Clarke's side matching their supposed superiors throughout an absorbing contest.

Scotland rode their luck at times - with John Stones heading against the woodwork early on for England - but almost scored themselves with Stephen O'Donnell and Lyndon Dykes going close, before Che Adams spurned a golden opportunity.

The Scotland fans in the 22,000 crowd sang the loudest at the end, as the draw means their team could still reach the last 16 by beating Croatia in their final group game in Glasgow on Wednesday.

England failed to build on their opening 1-0 win over Croatia and sit second, level on four points with the Czech Republic, who they face in their last game on the same day.

In the second tie, Ivan Perisic scored a stunning second half equaliser, as Croatia pegged back Czech Republic for a 1-1 draw in Group D, keeping their slim hopes alive of qualifying to the European Championship knockout stages.

World Cup semi-finalists Croatia were well off the pace in the early stages and were dealt a huge blow,  when the Czechs were awarded a penalty, after centre back Dejan Lovren struck striker Patrick Schick with his elbow inside the box.

Scottish fans celebrate in the rain in Glasgow.
Scottish fans celebrate in the rain in Glasgow. Photo credit: Getty

Schick, with a bloody nose from the challenge, picked himself up to smash the ball into the bottom corner and move to the top of the tournament's goalscoring chart with his third goal.

Croatia equalised two minutes after the interval, when winger Perisic received the ball on the left channel, cut inside and fired a thunderous shot into the top corner. (

In the opening game of the day's play, Emil Forsberg scored Sweden's first goal of the Euro 2020 from the penalty spot, as they edged out Slovakia 1-0 to boost their qualification hopes in Group E.

After an insipid first half display, Sweden stepped up their intensity in the second half and deservedly earned a penalty in the 77th minute, when substitute Robin Quaison was brought down by Slovakia goalkeeper Martin Dubravka in the box.

Forsberg slotted the penalty into the right hand corner of the goal to take Sweden provisionally top of Group E on four points from two matches.

Having won their opening game against Poland, Slovakia still have a chance to progress to the knockout stage even as they face group favourites Spain in their final game on Thursday.