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Scotland v Albania

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The BBC reported this as 'Scotland four wins from Euros':  which translated as beating Albania and Israel at home, drawing both away games, and then beating two teams (from gp. 2-4) in the playoff semi-final and final.  Either way, one of the teams in League C is in the Euros.  Tonight's game will be interesting, Albania beat Israel 1-0.  

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Comfortable win. Could have been more. Albania never offered anything. Only got to beat bottom ranked Israel now... oh 😱

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7 hours ago, wynthank15 said:

Apparently, we have the second highest ranking in the section. Not getting out of the group would represent a new low.

It would certainly be disappointing but dropping to 77th in the FIFA rankings under the clueless Berri Vogts would still remain the all time low.

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20 hours ago, wynthank15 said:

Apparently, we have the second highest ranking in the section. Not getting out of the group would represent a new low.

Yes, as far as our group is concerned, we’re 40th in the FIFA rankings with Albania 58 and Israel 93. So not winning the group would be a disaster.

 But in league C as a whole, Romania are ahead of us at 28th in the world rankings, with Serbia at 36 and Montenegro 41. So in the semi finals we’d have to beat one of the other 3 group winners who will be pretty equal to ourselves.

Personally I think this is a great idea from UEFA. Teams are getting to face teams of a similar standard which should lead to better entertainment instead of mismatches such as Scotland v Gibraltar, and v Belgium which I sadly witnessed the other night. It’s also a way of qualifying for Euro 2020 by the back door. For nations like us who are perennially snookered by the seeding system and usually have 2 much stronger teams in our group, it offers a bit of hope.

You could be cynical and say that, as Euro 2020 will be staged at a multitude of venues including Hampden, they are only trying to make it easier for home nations to qualify, but as far as I know the Nations League is to be a regular tournament from now on.

Edited by TheMantis

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Have to agree Mantis, I only see this competition as a positive step. I gave up watching friendlies many moons ago, a complete waste of time, effort and money not only for the fans but also of limited benefit for the FA, coaches and players.

This tournament, on the other hand, will provide some meaningful competition to put some life back into our internationals with the added benefit of another chance to reach a major finals and restore some long lost pride and passion.

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Okay Mantis I will say it: I am cynical and say that, as Euro 2020 will be staged at a multitude of venues including Hampden, they are only trying to make it easier for home nations to qualify. It may still not be enough, I actually believe our ranking is way above where we actually are, the fact we rarely play African and S. American nations rather falsifies our standing. I actually agree with McLeish forget records wins and losses give as many players as possible International experience against good opposition. you only learn by being in the same situation often enough, then you make the correct decision automatically. Sometimes you need to go backwards to move forward which leads me to my next point:

Caley Canary this myth about Vogts being clueless is extremely unfair, the guy's command of English was not the best but if you recall he inherited an ancient Craig Brown team hence the reason for giving so many different players caps, he had to rebuild from scratch and he wasn't afraid to expose them to better sides. I will let Vogts record speak for itself, he remains the last Manager to get us to a play off, quite incredible given what he had to work with.

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I don't really have much time for McLeish this time round although he did a good job before. Although Strachan had probably had long enough, in hindsight maybe he should have stayed on, but they were painted into a corner as O'Neill was the obvious target and there seemed to be no plan B. Having personally had a fleeting experience of the blazer culture at Hampden, the whole thing really needs a clear out from top to bottom.

But I think Berti was atrocious tbh. I think his experience of Scottish football was playing against the likes of John Greig in the 1970s, a bit like himself, and he seemed to think it was a matter of harnessing the passion of the players and that was enough. Sadly it was a different players' mentality by that time.

The time I was proudest of the team was on a frosty September night in 1977, when they demolished the European champions Czechoslovakia 3-1 at Hampden just before beating Wales at Anfield. That was mainly Ormond's team with pace, controlled aggression and skill, under Ally MacLeod. Hartford, Jardine, McGrain, McQueen, Dalglish, Jordan... in front of 85000. All water under the bridge though. I suppose us oldies have to be thankful we experienced these times.

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I hear what you say Mantis but Vogts record still stands and he had nothing to inherit, I believe the useless Vogts rubbish was put about by the hierarchy you mention to cover for the paucity of our game at that time, the guy was an outstanding international player so he understood the game and since his time no one has managed to do better and no one has started from a lower base.

I was at the game you mention in the north enclosure, I think if you watch it again Scotland got away with some brutal tackles from the back which would not be tolerated in today's game, we haven't moved with the times where the game is organised to protect the ball players, quite rightly, where the player goes down on minimal contact and gets a free kick. Our players have to be better at protecting the ball in tight positions and winning our share of these free kicks amongst many other basic things.

I will give you one example, watch Italy's opening goal against us at Hampden 4 players including our captain turned their back on a throw in something an amateur player is told never to do, it's why you practice running backwards, and we lose a goal inside 5 mins from a throw in!!!!!!!! Professionals???????? Its these schoolboy howlers that we need to get out of our game which we saw on Friday night against Belgium but you only get that by experience. Marcello Lippi was asked what he sought in a player and he answered intelligence.

 

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1 hour ago, wynthank15 said:

I think McLeish found his best formation and starting 11 thanks to the call offs. Better be lucky than good.

I agree. Let's hope he has the courage to stick with them if and when the absentees are available again.

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Wouldn't bet on it Kingsmills, fitting KT and McGinn into the team is bound to raise it's head again when they are fit. I actually have a sneaky feeling that KT called off because he didn't want to play the left centre back role again or right back.Just my thought at the time.

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