EX-ENGLAND assistant John Gorman has praised the job Steve Clarke has done as Scotland manager and attributed the national team’s exit from Euro 2024 to the lack of top quality international players at his disposal.

Winchburgh-born Gorman was devastated when his country conceded a 100th minute goal to Hungary in their final Group A game in Stuttgart last month, lost 1-0 and failed to secure a last 16 spot.

However, the former Celtic full-back still believes ex-Chelsea, Liverpool and Newcastle United No 2 Clarke deserves praise for the progress the national team has made during his five year tenure.

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The Scotland manager has been heavily criticised both in the media and by members of the Tartan Army for his cautious game plan against Hungary - an outing his side needed to win to make history and go through to the knockout rounds. 

However, Gorman, who worked with the likes of David Beckham, Michael Owen and Alan Shearer in the England set-up for four years in the 1990s and was involved at France ’98, always feared his homeland would struggle in Germany.

(Image: PA) Ben Doak of Liverpool, Aaron Hickey of Brentford, Lyndon Dykes of Queens Park Rangers, Lewis Ferguson of Bologna and Nathan Patterson of Everton were all unavailable for the finals and Kieran Tierney of Arsenal was ruled out in the second game against Switzerland.  

“One guy I really like as a manager is Steve Clarke,” said Gorman. “I know Steve and am lucky that I know him. He is the nicest guy, a caring person. I just want nothing but success for him.

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“I think he has done a great job. His team play with a lot of heart and produce some good football at times as well. I just wish he had that little bit of luck that you need and that Scotland had got to the next stage of Euro 2024.

“But, being totally honest, Scotland just haven’t got the players that England can call on. Yes, they have Che Adams, Scott McTominay, John McGinn, Billy Gilmour. But they don’t have an abundance of top class players.

“They had a lot of injuries as well and didn’t have a lot of players to choose from. I had a lot of admiration for the players who were involved to be honest. What they did was tremendous really.”