Steve Clarke has called for critics to show Scotland more respect after they pulled off a remarkable victory against a much favoured Austria. The slender 1-0 victory will provide a huge boost to their hopes of qualifying for the 2022 World Cup. After a loss to runaway leaders Denmark, Scotland needed at least a point to stay in touch with their two playoff rivals Austria and Israel. Lyndon Dykes scored a penalty in the first half to notch his second goal in less than a week.
“It was no surprise to me,” Scotland manager Steve Clarke said. “They are a really good group of players who want to be successful for their country and they showed that tonight. So it was good. It just means it is another cup final [against Israel]. You have to keep picking up points. It was an important night for us to get something from the game. We managed to come here and put in a good performance, a good footballing performance. When we got the ball down we passed it well. We are not a long ball team as some people try to label us. We can play. If we have to go long we can play and fight for it. If we have to make the passes we make the passes. We deserve a little bit more respect.”.
“We had the most difficult week, really difficult,” he added. “We went to Denmark which is a tough place to go to start with, we had a lot of injuries and problems. We went down 2-0 early in the game, we dug in and got criticised for that actually. Israel went there tonight and lost 5-0. Then on the back of that, we knew we had to get something out of the next two games and we have come away with six points. If I had said to you that we would have come away with six points you would have all been delighted, so it was a pleasing night for us, I am really pleased for the players.”