Scotland's Top Ten Pens (part 1 1-5)
It's been all about Spot Kicks in Scotland's last two matches. Could this be our Top Ten most remembered Penalty Kicks of the modern era ? 1. Don Masson v Wales 1977 - Goal Wales, European Championship quarter-finalists in 1976, needed victory against Scotland to qualify for the 1978 World Cup finals. The game was switched to Anfield by a Welsh FA keen to profit from the cash supplied by a travelling Tartan Army. But Welsh football suffered their first glorious failure in a game marred by a controversial Scotland penalty and the infamous Joe Jordan handball incident. The Scotland striker appeared to handle the ball in the Wales box under pressure from Wales defender David Jones as they challenged for Asa Hartford's long throw - and amazingly to the Welsh players, French referee Robert Wurtz awarded a penalty. Scottish skipper Don Masson calmly slotted home the spot-kick before Kenny Dalglish's late strike settled the tie to send Scotland to Argentina and leave Welsh fans heartbroken. 2. Davie Cooper v Wales 1986 - Goal Scotland qualified for the 1986 World Cup, their fourth in succession, in traumatic circumstances. The squad went into their last qualification match against Wales needing a point to progress to a qualifying playoff against Australia. With only nine minutes remaining and Wales leading 1–0, Scotland were awarded a pen for handball against Joey Jones which was calmly slotted home by Coop. The resultant 1–1 draw meant that Scotland had progressed, but as the players and fans celebrated, national coach Jock Stein suffered a heart attack and died shortly afterwards. His assistant Alex Ferguson was handed the role of manager. Scotland gained qualification by winning 2–0 against Australia in a two-leg playoff, but were eliminated from the tournament with just one point from their three matches, a goalless draw with Uruguay following defeats by West Germany and Denmark. 3. Don Masson v Peru 1978- Missed Peru pushed Holland into second place in Group 4 in Argentina, where the Scots missed out on goal difference for the second successive tournament. Teofilo Cubillas was outstanding for Peru, scoring twice against Scotland in Peru's 3–1 win and hitting a hat-trick in their 4–1 victory over Iran. However, that opening game for Scotland at Argentina 78 could have been so different. Peru equalised an early strike from Joe Jordan and at 1-1 the hero of Anfield, Don Masson, was given the chance to put us back in front from the spot. His weak effort was easily saved and the rest, as they say, is history. 4. Gary McAllister v England 1996- Missed Euro 96, Wembley, Gazza and all that. England lead 1-0 through Shearer at the break but Scotland are coming more and more into the game after the interval and finally are given a chance to equalise when Gordon Durie is sent tumbling in the box. Captain McAllister hammers the pen against David Seaman and replays shows the ball is clearly rolling off the spot as the taker strikes the kick. Enter Uri Geller who claims to have moved the ball with psychic powers as he hovered over Wembley in a Helicopter. The Spoonbender contacts SF.net years later in attempt to right his wrong but his powers of the mind are still unable to help Scotland beat Norway in a World Cup qualifier. Gazza's wonder goal followed straight after McAllister's miss at Wembley and England won 2-0. 5. John Robertson v England 1981- Scored Scotland are without a Home Internationals win against England since 1977 but at a rain-soaked Wembley Steve Archibald is sent crashing in the box at the other end from McAllister's later Wembley miss and Forest's Robbo sends Joe Corrigan the wrong way from the spot to give us a 1-0 win. It is our first penalty award against the Auld Enemy since the 1960's.
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