Alex McLeish has been sacked as head coach of Scotland, the Scottish FA has confirmed.

    The decision was agreed collectively by the board at its scheduled meeting on Thursday, in consultation with McLeish.

    His assistant coaches, Peter Grant, James McFadden and Stevie Woods, will also leave their roles.

    The decision was taken to relieve him of his duties as boss of the national team with pressure mounting ahead of the crucial Euro 2020 doubleheader against Belgium and Cyprus in June.

    McLeish oversaw the 3-0 defeat in Kazakhstan in the opening fixture of Group I, putting the country in a difficult position to qualify directly for next year’s tournament after only one game.

    It was followed by a sterile 2-0 win over minnows San Marino, a game which saw the side booed and chants directed towards the SFA board.

    Ian Maxwell, Scottish FA chief executive said: “On behalf of the Board, I would like to place on record my thanks to Alex and his backroom team for their efforts in leading the national team over the past 12 months, not least in topping our UEFA Nations League group and reaching the play-offs.

    “The decision to part company was not an easy one, especially given Alex’s status as a Scotland Hall of Fame member, earning 77 international caps, having played in three World Cups and taken charge of the national team for two spells.

    “It was only taken after full consideration by the Board and after an honest and respectful conversation between myself and Alex earlier in the week. Ultimately, the performances and results as a whole in the past year – and, in particular, the manner of the defeat in Kazakhstan – did not indicate the progress expected with a squad we believe to be capable of achieving more.

    “With that in mind, it was agreed that we would seek to recruit a new management team to take us forward for the remainder of European Qualifying campaign.

    “At this point I would like to pay tribute to Alex for the good grace with which he has accepted the decision and for remaining unstinting in his support of the team for the remainder of the campaign. It befits his status as a Scotland legend and Hall of Fame inductee.

    “We firmly believe we have the potential to recover from the opening group defeat and unlock the potential of this exciting squad of players for the remainder of the campaign, safe in the knowledge we also have the play-offs as an additional route to UEFA EURO 2020.

    “With Hampden Park one of the Host City Venues for the 60th Anniversary of the European Championships, we are determined to ensure our supporters can watch the national team participate in UEFA EURO 2020.

    “Alex, Peter, James and Stevie leave with our best wishes for continued success in the future.”



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