Searching for a glimpse of positivity from a Scottish perspective from the European Championships rather brings to mind that infamous scene from Jurassic Park, where Laura Dern is up to the shoulder in a mountain of triceratops dung looking for a reason why the beast is feeling a bit under the weather.

As Jeff Goldblum quips, that is one big pile of s**t. But like the intrepid Laura, I have waded in, and I may well have found it.

We love to bash the broadcasters during these major tournaments, particularly for their insistence on extensively discussing whatever existential crisis the English are having during matches not even involving our friends from the south. But credit where it is due.

The BBC struck an impressive balance with their coverage of Scotland’s matches. Yes, we could have done without Gabby Logan referring to the Scots as ‘they’ on our national broadcaster. Perhaps a Scottish presenter would have been more appropriate. But even the inclusion of the outside perspective of Alan Shearer was a nice counterweight to the passionate patriotism of James McFadden (who has also had a good tournament).

READ MORE: Scotland captain Rachel Corsie hailed as 'breath of fresh air' after Euro punditry

David Moyes had some good tactical insights, though his presence as Steve Clarke’s approach was being ripped to shreds (given that he is the bookie’s favourite to be the next Scotland manager) was a little reminiscent of Michael Beale being perched in the Ibrox Main Stand ready to pick over the bones of Giovanni van Bronckhorst.

The star of the show though, undoubtedly, was SWNT captain and Aston Villa defender Rachel Corsie, who was insightful, articulated her points clearly and concisely, and retained just the right amount of bias towards the boys in dark blue to make her contributions entertaining too.

Praising a woman who is employed to analyse the men’s game is always a little fraught. On the one hand, you can come across as patronising, and even startled, like you have just discovered fire by stumbling across a female football analyst that knows what she is talking about.

On the other hand, and heaven forfend, you can be accused of being ‘woke’, with plenty of fans out there no doubt rolling their eyes when they heard of Corsie’s inclusion on the panel and dismissing it as a box-ticking exercise before they had even heard her opening her mouth.

It says something that I even feel the need to praise Corsie here, but the reason for doing so is simply to give credit where it is due. Heaven knows that female pundits take enough stick. Sometimes that is warranted, no doubt, but they are held to an entirely different standard than their male counterparts.

There will be men who have plenty to say about Eni Aluko’s contributions over on ITV, for example, and I don’t particularly think she is a great analyst myself. But they will say little or nothing about someone like Paul Merson, who seems like a lovely guy, but has carved out a 20-odd year career on Sky Sports by mauling the pronunciation of players’ names and getting a bit excited when the ball goes near the goal.

There are people out there, like Joey Barton, loathe as I am to mention him, who would have you believe that women aren’t qualified to provide analysis on the men’s game because it is a different sport entirely. But the likes of Corsie blow that theory out of the water.

Just as a great player doesn’t automatically make a great manager, neither do achievements on the park in the men’s game mean that someone will make a good pundit, or add value to the coverage of men’s football.

There should be a standard that these contributors are held to, but it should be the same standard across the board, no matter the sex of the pundit. Corsie has shown that, given the opportunity, women can be just as perceptive about the men’s game as the likes of Ange Postecoglou or Roy Keane, who have also been excellent during this tournament.

READ MORE: Must we have so many mentions of England during a Scotland game?

Hopefully we will see more of Corsie in the future. Her measured style was a nice departure from the sort of Punch and Judy punditry that we are often forced to endure in the Scottish game, as artificial conflicts are routinely confected to ‘drive engagement’, or some such.

There is absolutely an audience out there for more considered debate around the game, particularly from our national broadcaster, and Corsie would be a brilliant addition to the BBC’s regular rotation when she hangs up the boots.

And hopefully, in the future, it will be the content of a pundit’s analysis, and not their trousers, that will be the standard they are judged upon.


I would have loved to have been a fly on the window of the Scotland bus as it pulled away from the national team’s base in Garmisch-Partenkirchen. I’d imagine there was something of an inquest going on into who signed off on a jolly-sounding Bavarian brass band playing the ashen-faced Scots out of their hotel.

What I would say is that you can’t accuse the Scotland players and staff of not caring about the national team. They looked absolutely shattered.

It was a rather comical juxtaposition, nonetheless, lightening the mood even more when some social media wags dubbed the Benny Hill theme tune over the soundtrack.

Ach, at least we can laugh at ourselves. We may as well, everyone else is.