UEFA Under-21 Championship
Scotland 4-1 Kazakhstan
Thursday, 21 March 2024
SMiSA Stadium, Paisley


Scotland 4 (18’ Doig, 24’ Cameron, 38’ Conway pen, 54’ Fiorini)

Kazakhstan 1 (68’ Trufanov pen)

Team News

Tommy Conway, Max Johnston, Lewis Fiorini, and Josh Doig were all straight into the XI after they returned to the U21 squad, while Ben Doak and Jeremiah Mullen missed out through injury.

Josh Mulligan, Kai Fotheringham, and Ben McPherson were all called up but suffered recent injuries causing them to drop out. Rangers’ Cole McKinnon, who was called up to replace them, started on the bench.

As It Happened

The game did not take long to get going, with some dangerous looking attacks, fouls, and complaints with the referee in the opening five minutes, but no goalmouth action.

Murojon Khalmatov of Kazakhstan did well to retain the ball under continued pressure before letting fly an effort from range just shy of the ten minute mark, but the shot was too high to cause any worry.

Liam Morrison was then quick to react when the ball rebounded to him in the six-yard-box, but he could not find a way past the Kazakhstan ‘keeper from such close range.

Scotland took the lead in the 18th minute as a wayward first time shot from range by Connor Barron acted as a pass to captain Josh Doig in the box, who took a touch out and opened the scoring by finishing into the roof of the net through an extremely tight near-post angle.

Just shy of five minutes later it was 2-0 Scotland, as Kieron Bowie danced past multiple opposing players before laying it off to Lyall Cameron who thundered the ball into the bottom corner from the edge of the penalty area.

Scotland kept pressing and Bowie did well to turn and play a through ball while lying down having been pushed to ground, Tommy Conway got on the end of the pass and the defence were beaten but the goalkeeper was quickly out to close down the shot.

Bowie was denied the goal he had been close to several times already when his shot from the centre of the box was parried away. Max Johnston was spared his blushes by the offside flag as his stab at the close-range rebound hit the crossbar.

Shortly after Johnston plucked a ball out of the air down the right wing, but his attempted cross was taken by the wind and carried into the arms of the Anarbekov.

Anarbekov was called to action soon again, but this time once more rushing out to stop Tommy Conway barrelling at him. He dived at the feet of the Bristol City forward, upending him, and the referee pointed to the spot. Conway himself stepped up and cooly converted, hesitating and sending the ‘keeper the wrong way to add Scotland’s third.

The teams went down the tunnel with Scotland three to the good at half-time, following at least 30 minutes of sustained dominance.

It took ten minutes of the second half for Scotland to add a fourth, as Lewis Fiorini’s low shot from close-range was tipped onto the post and in by the sprawling goalie.

The referee pointed to the spot once more, this time for the visitors. Yan Trufanov stepped up and chipped it down the middle to pull one back.

A quick breakaway left Adam Devine able to square the ball into one of two unopposed attackers in the box, but his pass was too far forward and the ‘keeper could claim it.

Scotland were unlucky not to add a very late fifth goal, as substitute Michael Mellon carried received the ball in the box and chopped by his marker, but the defender was able to slide in and get a touch. This touch surpassed the ‘keeper and the ball rolled along the six-yard line where McKinnon was beaten to it by a sliding toe to turn it out.

With four different scorers and a solid performance from everyone in blue, the official Player of the Match award went to Connor Barron who acted as the perfect link between attack and defence throughout.

Match Report by Connor Steel

Next Up

Scotland Under-21s are back in competitive action in September facing, Spain at home followed by Malta away. Before that, they will have a couple of friendlies in June that will be confirmed in due course. 


Scotland: Slicker; Johnston (74’ Devine), King, Morrison, Bowat; Barron, Cameron, Doig; Bowie (59 Mebude), Fiorini (74’ McKinnon), Conway (89’ Mellon)

Unused Substitutes: Newman, Angelini, Denholm, Neilson, Anderson

Kazakhstan: Anarbekov; Tkachenko (79’ Mrynskiy), Kassabulut, Shirobokov, Kalmyrza, Kurgin (46’ Nyrkov); Yessimbekov (59’ Kaldybekov), Nazymkhanov, Khalmatov, Mitrofanov (59’ Ankudinov); Trufanov (85’ Abdulla)

Unused Substitutes: Pivkin, Berdibek, Zhaksylyk, Askarov