NICOLA Sturgeon will not attend Scotland's first match in a major football tournament in 23 years, it has emerged.

The First Minister, who today wished Steve Clarke's side good luck and said she would be "absolutely behind them as they kick the first ball", will miss next Monday's game at Hampden against the Czech Republic.

The 2pm kick-off means she will be working instead. 

Ms Sturgeon will not attend Scotland's game against England at Wembley a week on Friday either.

It is also unclear if she will attend Scotland's third game against Croatia at Hampden on June 22, meaning she could miss the national side's entire first round, with no guarantee that it will make it to the second round.

A Scottish Government spokesperson said: “The First Minister will be cheering on Scotland when they kick-off their campaign next week, but will not be attending Monday’s match."

At FMQs, Ms Sturgeon said: "I also take the opportunity today to wish Steve Clarke and all of the Scotland men’s football team all the best as they prepare to embark on the European championship campaign.

"On Monday afternoon, 23 long years of frustration, pain and standing on the sidelines will come to an end.

"The team has done us proud already but we will all be absolutely behind them as they kick the first ball and all the way through the tournament.

"We all hope that that will be for a considerable way into the tournament or—who knows?—perhaps the whole way." 

Ms Sturgeon and her husband Peter Murrell, the SNP chief executive, have previously attended Wimbledon to watch Andy Murray.