Belfast Telegraph

Strachan's delight as Scotland enjoy great away day

Czech Republic 0-1 Scotland

By Ronnie Esplin

Gordon Strachan told his Scotland players they should all be proud of themselves following their battling 1-0 friendly win over the Czech Republic at the Generali Arena.

The national team boss named 10 uncapped players over two squads for the challenge matches in Prague and against Denmark at Hampden Park next Tuesday night, as he looks to build towards the 2018 World Cup qualifiers which begin later in the year.

Midfielder Kenny McLean started for the first time as Ikechi Anya's goal after 10 minutes was ultimately enough to secure the win, and forward Tony Watt and defender Paul Caddis came on late in the game to make their debuts.

The visitors had to survive a first-half battering as the home side fought ferociously with pace and power in their bid to draw level, but Scotland goalkeeper Allan McGregor was in inspired form with a string of saves and his defence helped out after the break to hold out for the morale-boosting win.

Strachan said: "There was a lot of players not here you would have expected to be here.

"It was a bit of a gamble when you come to places like this when you don't have a full squad, but the group made it a good night and they can all be proud of what they done, even the ones who didn't get on.

"They had to work hard. They did a double session the other day because we are not a great side but we can turn ourselves into a decent side by working hard.

"It was good for them. They keep learning and it was great learning from the first half to the second half, about how small things can change a game."

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