Euro 2024

Scotland v Hungary: Dangerous Dom can damage Scotland

Scotland captain Andy Robertson
Can Andy Robertson lead Scotland into the last 16?

Both Scotland and Hungary know they have to win to have a chance of reaching the last 16 at Euro 2024, and Kevin Hatchard expects a lively clash...

Scotland v Hungary
Sunday 23 June, 20:00
Live on BBC One

Scotland have given themselves a chance

I suggested in my Scotland v Switzerland preview that Steve Clarke's men would bounce back and claim at least a point, and so it proved, as they carved out a 1-1 draw that kept their Euro 2024 qualification hopes alive. There was much more purpose about Scotland, and had Grant Hanley's second-half header gone in instead of crashing against a post, Scotland could be in a seriously strong position.

As it is, Scotland need to win to have a hope of moving into the top two, although four points may well be enough to see them qualify as one of the four best third-placed teams. If they do reach the last 16, Clarke will have made history, becoming the first coach to lead Scotland to the knockout phase of a major tournament.

There were huge improvements against the Swiss. Goalkeeper Angus Gunn went from zero to hero, following up an awful display in the 5-1 defeat to Germany by making a series of outstanding saves against Switzerland. As they have done throughout the qualifiers, Scott McTominay and John McGinn got into good positions in attacking areas, and McTominay scored Scotland's goal. The Manchester United player was Scotland's top scorer in qualifying with seven strikes.

One growing concern is the form of Celtic right-back Anthony Ralston. Germany clearly identified him as a weak link in Munich, and they pressed him ferociously every time he was in possession, while he gifted Xherdan Shaqiri the ball for Switzerland's spectacular equaliser in Cologne.

Scotland will be without defender Kieran Tierney because of injury. The Arsenal player was stretchered off in Cologne, and has been sent home to have his injury assessed. Scott McKenna is likely to come into the back three.

Hungary in the last-chance saloon

Having failed to win a game at Euro 2020, Marco Rossi's Hungary are desperate to produce a win that keeps their hopes of qualification alive. They must beat Scotland to secure third place, and then they have to hope that is enough.

The Magyars have paid dearly for freezing in the glare of the spotlight in the first half of their opener against Switzerland. They found themselves 2-0 down at the break, and it proved too big a mountain to climb as they lost 3-1. They were better against Germany, making some big chances, but they failed to convert them in a 2-0 defeat.

Hungary haven't won any of their last eight games at the finals of European Championships, and they are looking to avoid losing all of their group games, which is what happened at Euro 1972 and the 1978 World Cup.

Rossi isn't expected to change much in terms of personnel. Roland Sallai and skipper Dominik Szoboszlai are expected to support Barnabas Varga in attack. Varga scored against Switzerland, and missed a glorious headed chance against Germany.

Football Only Bettor Euros Daily - Listen to Sunday's tips here!

Liverpool star can make his mark

Hungary captain Dominik Szoboszlai has already registered an assist in this competition, and he stung the palms of Germany keeper Manuel Neuer with a free-kick in the second game. Opta tell us that Hungary scored seven goals from free-kicks and corners in qualifying - more than any other team - and Szoboszlai is their set-piece taker.

Considering the Liverpool midfielder packs a punch from long range, is an excellent crosser and whips in dangerous set plays, he seems a chunky price at 11/82.38 in the To Score or Assist market on the Sportsbook.

I also like the look of his Liverpool teammate Andy Robertson to be fouled at 7/52.40. He was fouled against Germany, and he made some rampaging runs against Switzerland. This could end up being quite a chaotic game, as both teams chase the victory they need, and I can see Robertson racing forward on a counter-attack, and a desperate Hungarian hacking him down.

Goals and corners the way to go

Neither team has kept a clean sheet at this tournament, and neither team can really afford to play cautiously, so I'll combine a BTTS bet with Over 7.5 Corners at 2.0621/20 on the Sportsbook's Bet Builder.

Hungary's game against Germany featured 18 corners, and their clash with Switzerland featured eight. Scotland's game against Switzerland featured 13 corners, so we aren't asking a lot just to hit eight.

Now read the rest of our Euro 2024 content here!

Recommended bets

New Customers can get £50 in free bets!

Available to new customers only. Place a £10 bet on the Betfair Sportsbook and you will receive £50 in free bets to use on Bet Builders and Accas! Opt-in here and T&cs apply.

Prices quoted in copy are correct at time of publication but liable to change.