Steve Clarke committed to leading Scotland to 2022 World Cup, says SFA chief executive Ian Maxwell

Steve Clarke is “absolutely committed” to remain Scotland head coach beyond the delayed Euro 2020 and lead the country to the 2022 World Cup, says Scottish FA chief executive Ian Maxwell.

Clarke will oversee Scotland’s first appearance at a major finals this summer since the 1998 World Cup.

Scotland sit second after three games in their qualifying table for next winter’s World Cup in Qatar and Maxwell accepts Clarke could be a managerial target for clubs if they impress at the Euros.

“He is absolutely committed. When he took the job he wanted to get to the Euros,” Maxwell told Sky Sports News.

“That was coming up fairly quickly in his national team managerial career. He is obviously very driven to get to a World Cup.

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“That is the pinnacle from a football perspective and he definitely wants to take Scotland there.”

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Clarke was appointed as Scotland boss in May 2019 as successor to Alex McLeish after two years in charge of Kilmarnock in the Scottish Premiership.

“It proves he was the right appointment because he has qualified us and it proves that he is doing well,” Maxwell added.

“I don’t know the last time that somebody talked about a Scotland manager moving on for a positive reason and it is great that we will be able to sit and discuss that.

“Hopefully we can get out of the group and get us as far as we can in the tournament. If there is interest in Steve then that means he is doing a good job and everybody would be happy.”

SFA confident fans will be present at Hampden for Euros

Scotland’s national stadium Hampden Park is due to stage four matches at Euro 2020.

A minimum crowd of 12,000 has been agreed with UEFA for those games, but there are doubts over whether fans will be allowed into the stadium, with Glasgow under the Scottish government’s level three Covid restrictions.

Two of Scotland’s group-stage fixtures are among the games due to be held at Hampden.

No fans were present at Hampden for Saturday’s Scottish Cup final between St Johnstone and Hibernian.

“Until we are told otherwise, we are going on the assumption that there are 12,000 spectators coming and all the work that we are doing is very much focused on that,” Maxwell said.

“When the government made the decision to grant the exemption at the time for the Euros Scotland didn’t have spectators in any games.

“There was no hospitality sector open, it was in a very different place. But the government obviously recognise the benefit of hosting the Euros and having fans at the matches has and wanted to commit to doing so.

“Like every other European host city it was always caveated depending on the prevalence of the virus at the time and that won’t change.

“The first minister is obviously reviewing matters on a weekly basis so we have got two or three reviews hopefully before we get to the Euros.”

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