Belfast Telegraph

Thursday 18 September 2014

Scots optimistic despite setback

Czech Republic 1 Scotland 0: Craig Levein's decision to drop Kenny Miller and play a defensive line-up failed to pay off as Scotland suffered the first defeat of their Euro 2012 qualifying campaign against Czech Republic in Prague last night.

Levein, though, insists he was happy with his controversial formation.

The Scots, playing without an out-and-out striker, failed to test home keeper Petr Cech and lost to a Roman Hubnik header in the 70th minute, leaving them with four points from three games ahead of the match against Spain at Hampden on Tuesday night.

Asked what he would say to those who will say he should have used a different system, the Scotland boss sarcastically said: “Yes and that different system always results in a victory doesn't it?

“I picked a system that I thought was working very well.

“We lost a goal to a set-piece but I can't fault the lads for what we did tonight.

“We restricted them for the majority of the game.

“I was happy with it (the system).

“The whole game plan wasn't to lose a goal and when we lose a goal it all changes, of course.

“But I think we had some pretty good performances out there.

“A lot of hard work went in to the performance tonight and I can't fault them.

“We lost a goal to a set piece which generally we are good at defending.

“We have a game on Tuesday and it gives us a chance to bounce back from this defeat.

“I made it pretty clear that I picked a system to play against the Czech Republic and it will be a different system on Tuesday night.”

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