Luck of the Irish missing for Ward in defeat!

Stephen Ward (left) holds his head in his hands as Scotland's Charlie Mulgrew celebrates Shaun Maloney's winner at Celtic Park
Stephen Ward (left) holds his head in his hands as Scotland's Charlie Mulgrew celebrates Shaun Maloney's winner at Celtic Park

Clarets defender Stephen Ward played 90 minutes in the Republic of Ireland’s 1-0 Euro 2016 Group D qualifing defeat against Scotland.

The loss at Celtic Park - inflicted by Shaun Maloney’s stunning strike in the 74th minute - meant Martin O’Neill’s side dropped to fourth in the table.

Scotland, who had Clarets goalkeeper Matt Gilks on the bench as Cardiff City’s David Marshall kept a clean sheet, climbed to third having gone level on points with the Republic of Ireland and second place Germany.

Group leaders Poland now have 10 points - three more than the chasing pack - after beating Georgia 4-0.

Ward is now set to feature in his nation’s exhibition match against Jurgen Klinsmann’s USA tonight in Dublin, while Gilks remains among Gordon Strachan’s squad to face England.

Elsewhere, midfielder Cameron Howieson was an unused substitute in New Zealand’s 1-1 draw with China at Nanchang.

Former Charlton Athletic and Celtic midfielder Zheng Zhi opened the scoring for the hosts before Leicester City’s Chris Wood netted the leveller in the 88th minute. The All Whites take on Thailand today at His Majesty the King’s 80th Birthday Anniversary 5th December 2007 Stadium in Nakhon Ratchasima.