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Not getting ahead of ourselves


Diamond Scot
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To be clear from the start, the Denmark game was the best performance ive seen from a Scotland side in the last 20 years. This came on the back of good wins against Moldova and Faroes away (the kind of games we historically have messed up) Moldova and Isreal at home and Austria away (the kind of result thats been rare in recent years).

However reading some of the other threads I think its important to not get carried away with either where we are at or indeed what we have done. The results above are what we have been screaming out for in the last 20 years. Beating the minnows home and away and then beating a decent side in Austria away from home. As much as we were great against Denmark on Monday, they had nothing to play for (I dont think for a minute teams really care about 100% records). They are nice but I cant see a player putting his body on the line when they have already qualified.

The play offs will be hard, the unseeded teams are tough games and the final if we get there could be very hard.

Its one thing beating a good team when they have nothing to play for. Its another when they have as much to play for as us.

That said im more positive about where the team are at now than anytime in my life, im actually ok if we dont make it to the world cup because I can finally see progress. Id accept getting to all the euros from this point onwards and maybe even getting out the group stages. 

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1 minute ago, Diamond Scot said:

To be clear from the start, the Denmark game was the best performance ive seen from a Scotland side in the last 20 years. This came on the back of good wins against Moldova and Faroes away (the kind of games we historically have messed up) Moldova and Isreal at home and Austria away (the kind of result thats been rare in recent years).

However reading some of the other threads I think its important to not get carried away with either where we are at or indeed what we have done. The results above are what we have been screaming out for in the last 20 years. Beating the minnows home and away and then beating a decent side in Austria away from home. As much as we were great against Denmark on Monday, they had nothing to play for (I dont think for a minute teams really care about 100% records). They are nice but I cant see a player putting his body on the line when they have already qualified.

The play offs will be hard, the unseeded teams are tough games and the final if we get there could be very hard.

Its one thing beating a good team when they have nothing to play for. Its another when they have as much to play for as us.

That said im more positive about where the team are at now than anytime in my life, im actually ok if we dont make it to the world cup because I can finally see progress. Id accept getting to all the euros from this point onwards and maybe even getting out the group stages. 

What will happen if we get carried away? Will the world end?

I can understand what you’re saying but I don’t think anyone (from what I’ve read anyway) thinks we are now world beaters who will definitely qualify for the World Cup. 

Scotland supporters have had very little to be happy about in the last 23 years so I’m not surprised that a few folk on here are happy and excited for the playoffs. 

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Inclined to agree, while we should not fear anyone in the play off's, end of the day those unseeded teams finished 2nd in their groups, and with the exception of Austria and the Czech, none of them are slipping in through the back door, so are there on merit.

On paper Macedonia are the easiest team, just like the flip side people from unseeded countries are looking at us as the easiest seeded team (as I said elsewhere, speaking to a Ukrainian football journalist I know, and he says everyone in Ukraine wants us, followed by the Welsh) but they got to second place by beating Germany away from home, so are no mugs.

Think we have shown more than enough since September that we are going in the right direction and could either play the likes of a Poland or Ukraine off the park with a 2-0, or slump to a 1-0 win against Macedonia or the Czechs.

More a case of how much of the luck of the draw do we get for the final.

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Well at least it took a bit longer than usual for the doom mongers to appear. 3 days is quite impressive on here 🙂

Seriously though , I do understand what is being said , and given the last 20 years it is understandable that people will be afraid to get too carried away.  
However I dont agree that Denmark  took the foot off the gas because they had nothing to play for. I do think they underestimated us but every player in their team is playing to retain a place in the team and play for their country in the WC, plus they didnt have the issue of potential bookings hanging over them for playoffs either.

My only concern for March  is that the result will have forced other teams to take notice of us so we will need to maintain that level going forward. 

 

 

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People are so keen to downplay our achievements/performances.

This is the second time today two of our noteworthy performances and results have been attempted (poorly) to be explained away. On another post it was claimed we got a draw against England in the Euros as England were looking to manufacture an easier route through the tournament. Now in this thread it is because Denmark had nothing to play for. We even had it on the Serbia play-off match when people moan that we never really beat them as it went to penalties.

Why do we so readily look to denigrate or downplay our results. Perhaps it explains the mindset that has held back our players for years?

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3 hours ago, Texas Pete said:

What will happen if we get carried away? Will the world end?

I can understand what you’re saying but I don’t think anyone (from what I’ve read anyway) thinks we are now world beaters who will definitely qualify for the World Cup. 

Scotland supporters have had very little to be happy about in the last 23 years so I’m not surprised that a few folk on here are happy and excited for the playoffs. 

The world doesnt end but getting ahead of ourselves can have an impact.

Classic example was the summer. For years and years the vast majority of fans just wanted to get back to a major comp. Couldnt care less how we did when we got there, please god please just let us go to one. Clarke and the team then get us to one with a very good unexpected performance in Serbia and come the lead up to the summer we have lots of fans saying we should beat Czech and Croatia. When that doesnt happen a not insignificant percentage of fans were doubting Clarke and not happy he got a new contract. 

If those fans had got their way would we be in the position we are now?

Im not saying dont enjoy the success, god knows I am. Im saying it needs to be tempered with a touch of realism. We have done amazingly well to finish 2nd and get a seeded draw but its still uphill from here.

If for example we got a non Poland for the semi and got beat. Id be disappointed but still confident in the managers and players going forward as its all about progress.

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2 minutes ago, Caledonian Craig said:

People are so keen to downplay our achievements/performances.

This is the second time today two of our noteworthy performances and results have been attempted (poorly) to be explained away. On another post it was claimed we got a draw against England in the Euros as England were looking to manufacture an easier route through the tournament. Now in this thread it is because Denmark had nothing to play for. We even had it on the Serbia play-off match when people moan that we never really beat them as it went to penalties.

Why do we so readily look to denigrate or downplay our results. Perhaps it explains the mindset that has held back our players for years?

What part of saying it was our best performance in 20 years in downplaying it to you?

I stated a fact. Denmark had already qualified. Do you agree or disagree that players try harder when there is something on the line? 

Thats not the same as saying Denmark didnt try, didnt care or were easy to beat. In my opinion its just something to bear in mind when looking at the bigger picture.

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12 minutes ago, Diamond Scot said:

The world doesnt end but getting ahead of ourselves can have an impact.

Classic example was the summer. For years and years the vast majority of fans just wanted to get back to a major comp. Couldnt care less how we did when we got there, please god please just let us go to one. Clarke and the team then get us to one with a very good unexpected performance in Serbia and come the lead up to the summer we have lots of fans saying we should beat Czech and Croatia. When that doesnt happen a not insignificant percentage of fans were doubting Clarke and not happy he got a new contract. 

If those fans had got their way would we be in the position we are now?

Im not saying dont enjoy the success, god knows I am. Im saying it needs to be tempered with a touch of realism. We have done amazingly well to finish 2nd and get a seeded draw but its still uphill from here.

If for example we got a non Poland for the semi and got beat. Id be disappointed but still confident in the managers and players going forward as its all about progress.

You can do it your way and others can do it their way. If that’s allowed?

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6 minutes ago, Diamond Scot said:

What part of saying it was our best performance in 20 years in downplaying it to you?

I stated a fact. Denmark had already qualified. Do you agree or disagree that players try harder when there is something on the line? 

Thats not the same as saying Denmark didnt try, didnt care or were easy to beat. In my opinion its just something to bear in mind when looking at the bigger picture.

Okay reading your original post again you ask for realism

Remember that Denmark had qualified before the Faroe Islands match and so had nothing to play for in that match either but they still went out and won. So having nothing to play for is not really as relevant as you would think. I'd guess many teams in their last qualifying fixture had nothing to play for but still managed to get a result against a team that had everything to play for. Northern Ireland immediately spring to mind. Georgia beating Sweden are another. Pretty sure there were more too.

Since we lost to Denmark and were really under the cosh in our qualifying campaign every match has been billed as crunch matches and must wins and we have answered the call in each of those matches. Yes even the banana skin fixtures away to Faroe Islands and away to Moldova. Certainly for Scotland sides over the last 20 years that is a huge rarity. It happened under McLeish in 2007 but that ended up fruitless.

I do agree with the vast majority of your post and for me we should remain positive and take our recent set of results as a reason to have confidence and self-belief - those are traits the team are going to need when March comes around. We have to be on the front foot and really believe we can do this. We have momentum just now and that can carry us far.

As you say the future is bright whatever happens in March and positivity is important.

 

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4 minutes ago, killiefaetheferry said:

I feel like I'm genuinely conflicted here 😂. Enjoying our fantastic performance and the recent results, but aware that we've only put ourselves back into competition with teams of a similar or better standard and that there's a massive challenge coming up, regardless of who we play. 

Yes you can look at it that way but if we want to be at the sport's biggest tournament we have to beat quality teams to make that happen. But we have shown in the last year we can mix it with the big boys. We beat Serbia in last year's play off away from home, we drew at Wembley against England in the Euros, we beat Austria in Vienna when the chips were down - a team in these play-offs and we have beaten Denmark a team ranked 10th in the world (only Portugal and Italy are ranked higher than them in all of the teams in the play-offs). We have proven on multiple occasions in this past year that we can get results from the very best teams when we need them so why should this be any different?

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9 hours ago, Diamond Scot said:

The world doesnt end but getting ahead of ourselves can have an impact.

Classic example was the summer. For years and years the vast majority of fans just wanted to get back to a major comp. Couldnt care less how we did when we got there, please god please just let us go to one. Clarke and the team then get us to one with a very good unexpected performance in Serbia and come the lead up to the summer we have lots of fans saying we should beat Czech and Croatia. When that doesnt happen a not insignificant percentage of fans were doubting Clarke and not happy he got a new contract. 

If those fans had got their way would we be in the position we are now?

Im not saying dont enjoy the success, god knows I am. Im saying it needs to be tempered with a touch of realism. We have done amazingly well to finish 2nd and get a seeded draw but its still uphill from here.

If for example we got a non Poland for the semi and got beat. Id be disappointed but still confident in the managers and players going forward as its all about progress.

I agree with the point that we shouldn't get disheartened if we do get knocked out in the semis. We are making progress and we should be happy with that. The euros is a more achievable goal and I am looking forward to us getting to the euros every four years from now on. 

Lets just enjoy being in the play offs and if we get there great if we don't then we move on and look forward to the euro2024 campaign. 

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3 minutes ago, Caledonian Craig said:

Jeez we must be worse than Northern Ireland then who got a sraw against Italy. Worse than Sweden too who BEAT Italy in the last World Cup play-offs.

We probably are worse than Sweden to be fair. Good point about Northern Ireland though.

If we get through the semis and play Italy or Portugal in the final and they play like they did last week we have a good chance of beating them. Especially if we are playing at Hampden. 

The defeatist attitude of some people on here is ridiculous. Italy and Portugal are in the playoffs for a reason - they didn’t play well enough to win their groups. If they continue to play poorly they probably won’t qualify at all. 

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As Scotland supporters we know damn fine to enjoy the moment, doesn't mean we can't dream, but don't start to expect... 

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1 hour ago, Caledonian Craig said:

Jeez we must be worse than Northern Ireland then who got a sraw against Italy. Worse than Sweden too who BEAT Italy in the last World Cup play-offs.


remember the free kick that Italy got when we played them last when they fouled Alan Hutton and then scored?  We are playing against 12 men and fifa.  No way Italy would not get every decision going. Italy will be at the World Cup.

 

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4 minutes ago, Malcolm said:


remember the free kick that Italy got when we played them last when they fouled Alan Hutton and then scored?  We are playing against 12 men and fifa.  No way Italy would not get every decision going. Italy will be at the World Cup.

 

Hmm so how did Sweden swing it then against them to win in a play-off?

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4 minutes ago, Malcolm said:


remember the free kick that Italy got when we played them last when they fouled Alan Hutton and then scored?  We are playing against 12 men and fifa.  No way Italy would not get every decision going. Italy will be at the World Cup.

 

Why didn’t the ref hand them the match against Northern Ireland then?

Or does corruption only kick in when the group stage has ended?

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10 minutes ago, Caledonian Craig said:

Sitting 21st place of UEFA countries. Knocking on the door of the pot containing second seeds.

That's what I would've thought but apparently rankings aren't used for the next euros, it's down to your final nations league position! Mental

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