Austria 0-1 Scotland: Lyndon Dykes penalty earns huge away win

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Scotland won thanks to Lyndon Dykes' second goal after two games.

After a historic win in Austria, Scotland has impressively revived its World Cup 2022 qualification hopes. They have now reached a play-off position.

After a VAR check, Lyndon Dykes' penalty was awarded to Steve Clarke's men. This gave them a lead that they held onto in Vienna.

Stephen O'Donnell survived an Austria penalty appeal and Che Adams had the chance to calm the Scots' nerves.

The visitors remained strong despite intense second-half pressure to secure a valuable and well-deserved win.

It is now second in the rankings, following the 5-0 victory of Israel by Denmark, runaway leaders. Clarke's team is one point ahead of the Israelis who will visit Hampden next. They are four points above Austria with four remaining games.

Scotland was in a three-way battle for the runners-up berth and needed to deliver a big performance.

In a frenetic encounter, two VAR calls made the difference. Scotland won the first half by converting a disputed penalty. Austria was furious that they were deprived of one.

Adams' teammates were unable to appeal to Adams when he fell while grappling with Martin Hinteregger.

Replays revealed that Dykes had lost a lot of his jersey and he racked up the penalty in the middle, under and to the right of Daniel Bachmann, former Kilmarnock goalkeeper.

Hinteregger was already booked for clattering Callum McGregor and it was fortunate that he wasn't given a second yellow.

Just before the half-time break, luck was on Scotland's side when O'Donnell's ball hit O'Donnell's arm while he tried to get a header with Christophe Baumgartner. Konrad Laimer missed a penalty and sailed a shot wide in the melee.

The chaotic scene that followed the teams leaving the pitch was in line with the frantic opening half. The pace was relentless, with Austria making a strong start. Real Madrid superstar David Alaba sprinted down the left and whipping over a series of crosses.

Baumgartner and Marko Arnautovic both fired wide, the former even missing a header after being unmarked by an Alaba cross.

This was a direct approach to which Scotland refused to succumb, with their three centre-backs Grant Hanley (Jack Hendry), and Kieran Tierney standing firm time after time.

Scotland had the best opening with Bachmann denying John McGinn's cross from Dykes, but they were unable to recover their momentum after the break, as Austria surged forward, fuelled by anger.

When Hanley was charged with grappling with Hinteregger in a corner, the ball was not in play so no penalty was given. However, the Norwich City defender will be suspended for the Israel game.

Bachmann nearly gifted the visitors a second, when he kicked the ground as he attempted to clear. However, Scotland couldn't capitalize on the situation with O'Donnell's shot blocked.

After Adams' pass cleared the full-back, O'Donnell's shot was saved by the keeper.

Austria was the dominant possession until the final stages. The Scotland number one batted away a Baumgartner header, despite being in dominating possession.

Adams was unable to keep up with the hosts, but Scotland managed one goal and began to dream of reaching the finals.

Grant Hanley is the man of the match

As Scotland was under intense pressure, the centre-back was a huge success.

What have we learned?

This could be a game-defining victory for Scotland against a team that had only lost four of their 25 previous home games, and who took Italy to extra time in Euro 2020's last 16 matches.

The draw with England at Wembley was Scotland's highlight of the tournament. Another away performance was full of quality and determination.

It was the end of this World Cup triple-header that the country desired after a crushing defeat in Denmark and a grueling 1-0 win against Moldova.

At just twenty years old, Billy Gilmour was the captain of the midfield. He was also one of the standouts on the pitch, as Scotland enjoyed a rare away victory.

Match stats

Clarke's team have won consecutive matches since October 2020, when they beat Slovakia and Czech Republic.

Scotland have won five of their last five matches against Austria (W2D3) and they beat Austria for the first-ever time in a competitive away match on Tuesday.

In his six last games, Dykes scored five goals for club and nation (2 in 3 for Scotland; 3 in 3 QPR). For the first time, he scored consecutive goals in Scotland games.

Gordon, 38 years old and 250 days, was the fifth oldest player to play for Scotland's men's national soccer team. David Weir (40 years and 15 days) was the oldest.

Austria lost consecutive home World Cup qualifiers and failed to score in three consecutive home matches in any competitions since February 2008.

What's next?

Scotland finishes the campaign with two double headers. The first is Israel at Hampden, followed by the Faroe Islands on 9 and 12.

Next, a trip to Moldova is planned for 12 November. Then, a possible seismic Hampden meeting will take place with Denmark three days later.