It’s fair to say that as a young Scotland fan I’ve not got many happy memories of international football – let alone international football against our old pals England.
Scarred by Chris Iwelumo, Kazakhstan, Stuart Armstrong’s failure to just hoof it and many more horrible, horrible occasions, I’ve had no choice to recruit my old man as I try to find five of Scotland’s best moments against the Auld Enemy.
1. Leigh Griffiths’ free-kick – 2017
An absolute screamer. 1-0 down to England and mere minutes left on the clock, Griffiths steps up and thunders an absolute rocket to draw Scotland level. I’ve kept it short here as I’m fairly certain you all know what’s coming next…
2. Leigh Griffiths’ free-kick – 2017
Nope, this isn’t an accidental copy & paste. As everyone in Scotland can recall, he did it twice. In the same game. In the space of two minutes.
Never in my life have I seen such scenes the local. Limbs, drinks, phones and god knows what else flying in all directions – a scenario replicated in every public house in the land.
There’s not a young Scottish football fan around that would disagree about that being the best minute of our lives. Sadly I can only say minute – not day – because as you all know, we bottled it.
— David Campbell (@discocampbell) June 10, 2017
3. The Wembley pitch invasion – 1977
The first of the Da stories, and to be fair it’s a good one. We all love a good pitch invasion and we all love Rod Stewart’s contribution to Scottish football.
42 years ago, these were beautifully merged together as a famous 2-1 win for Scotland at Wembley was celebrated by a massive section of the 98,000 strong crowd storming the pitch.
The Tartan Army made Wembley their own that day – so much so they decided to take most of it home. Photos of the occasion show none other than Rod Stewart leading the charge on the famous turf.
#OTD in 1977, Scotland ended a 10-year wait to beat England at Wembley, and then upset 'keepers across the globe by pulling the bloody goals down. Outrageous behaviour. 😬 #GKUnion pic.twitter.com/DJiCsYWDE4
— The Goalkeepers' Union (@GKUnion) June 4, 2019
4. The Rous Cup – 1985
Right, I’ll be honest here, I’m clutching at straws. Either Gall Snr is suffering from age-related memory loss or we really have been brutal for over half a century.
In 1985 – after the annual home internationals between Scotland, England, Wales & Ireland were stopped – the Rous Cup was created to allow Scotland & England to continue to face off. The game wasn’t the best but we won 1-0. Get that right up you, England.
5. The Battle of Stirling Bridge – 1297
Sadly, despite being in his 50s, even my old man couldn’t come up with a fifth glorious moment so – inspired by the previous discussion of invasions – I’m mixing it up a bit.
A Man of the Match performance by then Scotland captain William Wallace as the home side racked up an impressive, and unexpected, 6000 – 1 victory. Sadly for Mr Wallace, England didn’t take too kindly to their shock defeat and were themselves the victors, recording a 1-0 win in the rematch at the Tower of London 8 years later.
Thankfully this unfortunate loss didn’t take the shine off the initial result, with Wallace now having a 67m high monument overlooking Stirling in his memory. I propose that if – no, sorry, WHEN – we pull it off in Nice, we build 23 more monuments to commemorate Shelley Kerr and her heroines.