Scotland captain Andy Robertson hopes Steve Clarke’s side have put smiles back on the nation’s faces by qualifying for Euro 2020.
In a year like no other, with lives majorly impacted by a global pandemic not seen for many a generation, Scotland provided some light amid the gloom with a penalty shoot-out win over Serbia.
It was nervy and tense – to be expected for Scotland – but with David Marshall’s save from Aleksandar Mitrovic, Steve Clarke’s side finally booked their place at the delayed European Championships.
Robertson, who has handed the armband first by Alex McLeish and kept in the role when Clarke took over last year, admitted emotions got the better of plenty of Scotland players.
Struggling to find the words right now, but I hope there is 5 million people smiling back home right now! The lads gave absolutely everything tonight, I could not be prouder of every single one of them! Oh and…… WE ARE GOING TO THE EUROS 💙🏴 pic.twitter.com/asGOI3FsOI
— Andy Robertson (@andrewrobertso5) November 12, 2020
But after not kicking a ball at an international tournament since losing 3-0 to Morocco in St Etienne 22 years ago, Scotland will lock horns with England, Croatia and Czech Republic next summer.
Robertson said: “There were tears everywhere at the end. It was so emotional. I’m so lucky I get to lead them out but those boys are something else. We are so together. We look forward to the summer now.
“We have not had enough time to look forward to it. We will have two games at Hampden and I will say every prayer I have to get a full Hampden because we will feel it.
“We felt the love back home and we felt how much we could give everyone a lift during a tough time. I hope everyone has a party at home because we have been through a tough time.
“It has been 23 years and we have done it. I don’t want to think about it because I will probably cry. We are looking forward to the summer now.”
Robertson is proud of how the team stuck together despite criticism of their early performances, with Scotland now nine games unbeaten.
They had led for nearly 40 minutes after Ryan Christie’s goal until Luka Jovic headed in an equaliser in stoppage-time.
Thirty exasperating minutes of extra-time followed with the Scots holding on, before five perfect penalties gave Marshall the platform to be the hero.
Robertson added: “There was so much emotion going into the game. We got so close and then they end up equalising and we had to pick ourselves up.
“When you go to penalties you always back Marshy, it was just whether the lads can hold their nerves and do it.
“I’m proud of every one in this squad because they have been through a lot. There has been a lot of criticism and negativity at times but we have stuck together and battled through it.
“I really hope everyone back home can see the positive side to this. I hope in a tough time we have put a smile on a lot of people’s faces.”