Euro 2024: Shankland & Gilmour to start? Scotland Q&A with Neil McCann

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Andy: We clearly got our distances wrong on Friday night. Adams was isolated and you could drive a bus between the midfield and defence. Would you tweak the system or is it horses for courses?

“I wouldn’t tweak the system. We were virtually a 5-4-1 out of possession but you’re right, the biggest problem for me was the area around the centre-backs which Ilkay Gundogan kept on finding.”

Sally: Would you agree that as a small nation just getting to the Euros is a major achievement? We have to be realistic and recognise we do not have sufficient quality players to make an impact. Would it not be better to take 22 of Scotland’s best young players and keep them together?

“The players who got us here deserve to be here. I think we’re all honest enough to believe we’re not going to win it. I remember Wales doing really well one year, they had a world-class player in Gareth Bale, which maybe we don’t have, but this group of players is good enough to progress for the first time in our history.

“I don’t believe bringing a group of young players over here to get absolutely battered is good for anyone.”

Jake: What are your thoughts on Grant Hanley? Is he up to international standards or could we see him struggle like Porteous on Friday if he starts?

“I would have started Grant Hanley. He’s maybe not got enough minutes under his belt, which is why he didn’t start, but I would start him.”

Anon: Do you think we should change goalkeepers? Not saying it was Angus Gunn’s fault but letting five goals in isn’t good for confidence.

“It’s not good for confidence. I would probably put a big portion of blame on Angus for the first, third and fifth goals. That being said, there weren’t many pass marks in the team.

“I think it would be unfair – we’re already going to change one of the back five, there’s an argument we may change the right side too, so I would keep the goalkeeper.”

Neil: Scotland seemed to give Kroos and Rudiger all the time in the world to pick their passes. Surely we should have man-marked Kroos and pressed Rudiger quicker and more aggressively. Why do you think Steve Clarke abandoned his pressing game for Germany of all teams?

“You can’t press and keep a high line. If you go and press aggressively and don’t get it right, you get absolutely hammered. We always felt they were going to sit deep – it didn’t work.

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“The problem is Germany played with a back four, which almost became a back two, and when Kroos dropped in it meant their spare man was always in through the middle. I don’t think we were ever equipped to go and press them like that.”


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