Furious Steve Clarke gives verdict on Scotland penalty controversy in Euro 2024 exit

Furious Steve Clarke gives verdict on Scotland penalty controversy in Euro 2024 exit

Steve Clarke was left mystified by the decision not to award Scotland a penalty in their Euro 2024 defeat to Hungary.

The Tartan Army were beaten by a 100th-minute Kevin Csoboth goal to finish bottom of Group A but manager Clarke insisted the definitive moment of Sunday’s game came towards the end of normal time.

Stuart Armstrong was bundled over by Willi Orban as he chased a ball into the box but Argentine referee Facundo Tello waved away their appeals, with VAR backing the on-field decision.

“The goal comes as a consequence of us trying to win the game,” he told BBC Sport.

“The goal is almost irrelevant. The moment for me was the penalty.

“It was 100 per cent a penalty. Someone has to explain to me why it wasn't a penalty because otherwise I'm thinking there's something wrong.

“I don't understand how VAR can look at that and say it's not a penalty.”

Former Scotland international James McFadden said during BBC’s commentary that the tackle was “clumsy”, adding: “I can’t believe the referee’s not given that.”

The fury was not limited to a Tartan Army perspective as Alan Shearer agreed that the incident merited a spot-kick.

“It’s a terrible challenge,” he said.

“He gets caught up [the pitch] Orban, he takes him out. His right knee onto [Armstrong’s] left calf. Clearly. That for me was a clear, clear penalty.”

Scotland’s exit meant they continued their unwanted record of being knocked out of every major tournament they have played in at the group stage.

“It was always a one-goal game,” summarised Clarke.

“We didn't manage to get the goal, we opened up at the end to try and get it.

“The overriding feeling is to be sad for everybody, for the supporters and the country and the players are just as sad as everyone else.”