SKY Sports is being urged to make Scotland’s crunch World Cup play-off free-to-air.

Following a historic run of six successive victories, Steve Clarke’s side has earned a spot in a mini-tournament to make it to Qatar 2022.

The team will discover its opponent in the play-off, to be held in March at Hampden, at a FIFA ceremony in Zurich at 4pm on Friday (November 26).

If Scotland’s men’s team win that match they will progress to the play-off final a few days later for a chance to qualify for their first World Cup since 1998.

As it stands, only those with a Sky Sports subscription will be able to stream the game online or on TV. But the Daily Record reports that the SFA is now in talks with Sky to make the game “as accessible to view as possible”.

And the SNP are now calling on the broadcaster to make the game free-to-air, as they did with Scotland’s heroic Euro 2020 play-off victory against Serbia in November last year.

The National:

In a letter to Jonathan Licht, the managing director of Sky Sports, the SNP's Ian Blackford and Gavin Newlands said that fans should be able to enjoy the "truly national events" without "cost, constraint, or restriction”.

SNP Westminster leader Ian Blackford said: "Steve Clarke's team have brought us on a joyous journey that has united the Scottish public in support for these players and their dream of representing Scotland at the World Cup.

"Making these vital play-off matches involving Scotland available free to air would ensure that every Scotland fan has the chance to watch these matches without the need to pay a subscription fee. Households are already experiencing mounting bills across the board – they should not be forced to pay to watch this national event.

"I urge Sky Sports to do the right thing and make these games free-to-air so everyone is able to properly enjoy these huge games."

Newlands, the SNP's sports spokesperson at Westminster, pointed to the decision by Channel 4 and Amazon in September to broadcast Emma Raducanu’s US Open final on free-to-air platforms.

He said: "These play-off games are crucial and represent the final steps in the journey to the World Cup - and they deserve to be enjoyed without cost, constraint, or restriction.

"There are a number of precedents for taking this step, the most recent being the decision to broadcast free-to-air Emma Raducanu’s remarkable achievement in winning the US Open final in September. We believe it is only right that a similar decision is taken in terms of broadcasting this major sporting event."

While Sky did drop its paywall for Scotland’s trip to Serbia last year, that was at a time when pubs across Scotland were closed due to a coronavirus lockdown, meaning many supporters would have had no means of watching the game at all.

A spokesman for the broadcaster commented: "We are a few months away from a potentially decisive qualification fixture."