BY IAIN COLLIN – @CCP_sport
IT IS likely Scotland would have had the oldest squad – and amongst the smallest – at Euro 2016 had they qualified for the championships.
Tournament organisers UEFA have released a ‘Euro anatomy’ factfile, detailing the ‘oldest, youngest; tallest, shortest’ of the teams and players participating in the France get-together.
And, based on the last competitive pool picked by manager Gordon Strachan, the only country to have chosen an older squad than Scotland’s is the Republic of Ireland – the nation Scotland would have knocked out had they progressed to the play-offs in November.
The average age of Strachan’s selection for the qualification double-header against Poland and Gibraltar in October was 28.92 – marginally older than the 28.83 chosen by Russia for the tournament that kicks off on Friday when hosts France take on Romania.
And when it comes to height, the Scots would also have been at a disadvantage.
The squad selected by Strachan back in October averaged out at 1.81m tall, which would have been the second smallest at the Euros.
However, they would have been comforted by the fact that Spain (1.80m) is the nation with a shorter pool of players in France.
Individually, had he been chosen for the tournament, Barry Bannan (1.67m) would have been the third-smallest – with only Italy’s Lorenzo Insigne (1.63m) and Jamie Ward of Northern Ireland (1.65m) shorter.
At the other end of the scale, standing at 2.01m, former Celtic keeper Fraser Forster is the second-tallest at the championships.
‘Oldest, youngest; tallest, shortest: EURO anatomy’
Oldest average age
- 29.39 – Republic of Ireland (11 players 30 or over)
- 28.83 – Russia (9 players 30 or over)
- 28.70 – Czech Republic (11 players 30 or over)
- 28.43 – Slovakia (11 players 30 or over)
- 28.43 – Italy (9 players 30 or over)
- (28.92 – Scotland (11 players 30 or over))
Youngest average age
- 25.39 – England (3 players 21 or under)
- 25.43 – Germany (3 players 21 or under)
- 25.57 – Switzerland (4 players 21 or under – joint most with Croatia)
- 25.91 – Belgium (3 players 21 or under)
- 26.30 – Turkey (2 players 21 or under)
- 1.86m – Sweden
- 1.85m – Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Germany, Hungary, Iceland
- 1.84m – Czech Republic, Poland, Slovakia, Switzerland, Ukraine
- 1.83m – England, Italy, Northern Ireland, Republic of Ireland, Russia
- 1.82m – Albania, France, Romania
- 1.81m – Portugal, Turkey, Wales (Scotland)
- 1.80m – Spain
- 1.63m – Lorenzo Insigne (Italy, FW)
- 1.65m – Jamie Ward (Northern Ireland, MF)
- 1.67m – Pedro Rodríguez (Spain, FW)
- 2.03m – Costel Pantimillion (Romania, GK)
- 2.01m – Fraser Forster (England, GK)
- 2.01m – Lovre Kalini? (Croatia, GK)
- 2.00m – Andreas Isaksson (Sweden, GK)