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John McGinn hopes to maintain goalscoring from for Scotland

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By Ronnie Esplin, PA

John McGinn admits he is looking to score every time he pulls on a Scotland shirt after his double helped Steve Clarke’s side to a 3-1 Euro 2020 qualifying win over Kazakhstan at Hampden Park.

The Aston Villa midfielder took his tally to seven in six international games as the Scots came back from a terrific opener in the 34th minute from Baktiyor Zainutdinov.

McGinn levelled three minutes into the second-half with a deflected free-kick before captain Steven Naismith headed in a second with McGinn adding a third at the end.

Scotland finished third in Group I with their third successive win and although they have failed to qualify for next summer’s finals through the conventional method they have the chance to get there through the Nations League play-offs.

McGinn insists he had “never” enjoyed a similar run of goalscoring form but is confident of keeping it going.

He said: “I think that it helps me that Naisy (Naismith) wants to come and link the play and I can feed off the scraps.

“If I can help the team with goals I am happy to do so.

“I am in a good run of form with goals and hopefully I can carry it on.

“I probably could have had a hat-trick tonight.

“That’s what the manager said. Being a bit picky maybe but I am getting in the positions and the important thing is the service is coming.

“The win was immensely important.

“We were a squad and nation battered with confidence towards the start of the campaign.

“Slowly but surely we have started to build that confidence and especially in the second half you seen a Scotland team again and one in March we can make the nation proud again.”

Scotland will be at home on March 26 and will discover their opponents in Friday’s draw.

The other semi-final is definitely Norway versus Serbia and the draw to see who will have home advantage in the final will also take place at the end of the week.

McGinn is confident of qualification to next year’s finals.

The former Hibernian and St Mirren player said: “If you don’t believe you can go through there is no point in turning up.

“If we play like we did for the majority of the Cyprus game at the weekend (2-1 win) and the second half tonight, no team will want to face us.

“We have players playing at the top of their game at club level and hopefully we can show that under the pressure of the March game.”

PA

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