New Exhibition: The Internationalists
Scotland’s Story on the World Stage.
Take a walk down to Scotland’s National Stadium and gaze upon our latest gallery, displaying remarkable items and memorabilia of Scotland on the world stage.
At the turn of the century, international football became increasingly popular and the need for a single body to oversee association football became more apparent. The Federation International de Football Association (FIFA) was founded in 1904 to organise international competition among national associations. FIFA membership currently currently stands at 211 national associations. This newly governed body would go on to host the inaugural World Cup in 1930- where 13 nations participated with no qualification phase; compare that to the upcoming 2026 World Cup which will see 48 nations play in the finals.
The World Cup is regarded as the most prestigious association football tournament and has grown to be the most widely viewed and supported event in the world.
Each of the national associations of FIFA must also be members of six continental confederations; Africa, Asia, Europe, North & Central America and the Caribbean, Oceania and South America. Scotland holds membership with the union of European Football Associations which organises club and national competitions in professional and amateur associations- such as the European Championships.
In September 2018, UEFA will launch the Nation’s league which will largely replace international friendly matches and improve the quality of football. The Nation’s League will provide an added route to the UEFA European Championship and allow for more competition for lower ranked nations.
The Scotland men’s national football team played its first official match against England, in 1872. This is the oldest official international fixture in the world and, since then, the Scotland national team has experienced the highs and lows of competitive tournaments. The men is navy blue first participated at a World Cup finals tournament in 1954. The longest period of success was between 1974 and 1990 when the team qualified for five successive World Cup finals tournaments. The men’s national team did not qualify for their first European finals tournament until reaching UEFA Euro 92. Qualification was also achieved for the European Championships in England in 1996. The last major tournament involving the men’s national team was the 1998 FIFA World Cup in France. With Hampden Park being a host stadium for UEFA Euro 202 matches, there is much hope and anticipation that the Scotland men’s national team will play in a major international tournament on home soil.
A wide range of items on display in the new exhibition.
The Scotland women’s national team played its first official match in 1972 against England. The Scottish FA took formal control over the team in 1998 and with a gradual restructuring of the women’s game in Scotland and some added investment, the women’s national team pushed for a place at a major tournament. The team would reach the play-off stage for Euro 2009 and Euro 2013 but narrowly missed out on qualifications on each occasion. However, the team bounced back in style, qualifying for the UEFA Women’s Euro 2017 tournament in the Netherlands. Many of the history makers of 2017 are still with the side and, so far, have enjoyed a strong qualifying campaign for the 2019 FIFA World Cup finals in France.
A signed Scotland Women’s jersey from the 2017 UEFA European Championships.