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Scotland beat Uruguay to win international tournament

Scotland 2

Smith 51', Dembele 72'

Uruguay 0

  • Saturday, 29 July 2017
  • Oriam, Edinburgh
  • Under 16´s
  • Under 16 International Tournament

Jamie Braidwood | YFS South East Region Journalist
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Scotland Under 16s rounded off a perfect week of international friendlies with a 2-0 win over Uruguay on Saturday afternoon in Edinburgh. 
The result means that Brian McLaughlin’s side finish their international tournament in 1st place, following victories over Qatar and England earlier in the week. 
It has been a hugely impressive and successful week for the young Scots, who have won all three of their games without conceding a single goal. 
“This week has been about the whole team”, said Scotland manager McLaughlin afterwards. “If you look at the way we play, we defend as a team and we go forward as a team.
“We spoke this week about wanting to play our game, our style, no matter what was happening, and 2-0 up with two minutes to go they were still doing that. The boys didn't want to let anyone down and they haven't. They've been absolutely incredible.”
Scotland’s success this week has been built on an determination to be in control, and to play the way they want to play. They have looked to dominate the ball and play out from the back whenever possible. Most of their best moments this week have followed a spell of positive, possession football. 
Again against Uruguay Scotland looked to do just that, with Jensen Weir sitting in front of the back four aiming to move the ball from side to side. Scotland had chances early on with Andrew Winter, Karamoko Dembele and Ben Cameron all going close.  
But there wasn’t a lot to split the teams going into half time. Uruguay had threatened themselves and it required a couple of vital, last ditch challenges from Jamie Hamilton as well as a save or two from goalkeeper Robbie Hemfrey. 
  • Half Time:
  • Scotland
  • 0-0
  • Uruguay
Even after the break Uruguay, for a moment, looked more likely to open the scoring. Hemfrey again had to get down quickly to make a save after a slick Uruguayan move. 
“I think you probably saw today there were some tired legs”, said McLaughlin. “In the build up all we talked about was can we finish on a high, can we win, but we had no idea if the boys could have recovered in time to play.”
Scotland this week have done well to produce big moments at big times, and have also done very well in taking their chances. One man who knows that better than anyone was midfielder Connor Barron, who scored the opening goal of Scotland’s 2-0 win over England after only receiving a late call up to the squad the night before.
Against Uruguay, Barron was again involved in a big moment. Receiving a pass on the edge of the box, he turned before scooping a pass over the heads of the Uruguayan back four. Connor Smith had made the run, getting on the end of the pass and bringing it down just before the goalkeeper before passing the ball into the far corner. 
With time running out and a Uruguayan equaliser looking ominous, Scotland bagged their game killing second. Cole Starrs received the ball out wide on the left before cutting inside and driving towards goal. As he made it into the box he skipped past a defender before being bundled over. 
Karamoko Dembele stepped up to take the penalty, decisively hitting it down the middle. Amongst much hype, Dembele was one of Scotland’s stand out performers during the week, lighting up games with moments of skill and glimpses of speed and touch that were simply incredible. Now he had his second goal of the tournament. 
McLaughlin had stressed multiple times during the week that Scotland were using this tournament as a training camp, with an emphasis on making sure that they were better players by the end of the week. There wasn’t to be an emphasis on winning but that was all forgotten as the final whistle blew. Indeed, winning games and winning tournaments is an invaluable experience in its own right, and as the Scotland players celebrated down on the pitch, it was clear that they would enjoy their victory. As he looked to the future, McLaughlin sounded positive. 
“The clubs are all working incredibly hard”, he said. “And what we are starting to see is a bigger pool of players to choose from, all with the same good habits and all trying to play football the same way. 
“The boys now will go back to their clubs, they'll work hard and we'll keep getting better.”
  • Full Time:
  • Scotland
  • 2-0
  • Uruguay


12. Robbie Hemfrey
2. Kane Patterson
4. Jamie Hamilton
5. Ben Cameron
20. Liam Morrison
18. Jensen Weir
16. Dylan Forrest
17. Reece McAlear
22. Connor Barron
11. Andrew Winter
10. Karamoko Dembele
1. Jack Newman
3. Finn Ecrepont
6. Cameron Logan
8. Connor Smith
9. Cole Starrs
13. Liam Miller
14. Josh Grigor
15. Adam Kettings
19. Michael Sparkes
Star Player
Connor Barron His incredible story continues. After making such a good impact against England in his first ever Scotland game, Barron started against Uruguay. He was very effective after being moved into midfield and set up Scotland's first goal with a magnificent scooped through ball.
Magic Moment
Midway through the first half Karamoko Dembele drew gasps from the crowd when he plucked a falling ball out of the sky with a sublime first touch.
  • Match report and photos copyright Youth Football Scotland.
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