Steve Clarke needs no reminder about how no nation can be taken for granted but he believes Luxembourg have provided a timely one for his Scotland side.
Scotland returned to Glasgow yesterday from Tel Aviv to prepare for their World Cup qualifier against the Faroe Islands at Hampden tomorrow.
With two draws from two games, it is vital Scotland pick up all three points tomorrow at the national stadium, but Clarke has warned the Faroes should not be underestimated.
He said: “Luxemburg’s result in Dublin a sharp reminder that you can’t take the Faroes for granted.
“You have to understand that these teams are now far better organised and more difficult to break down than they used to be a few years ago.
“Just look at the problems Spain had against Georgia. I’m told they needed a winner in the 93rd minute, so that just goes to prove that all these games are difficult. Then you just have to look at Slovakia drawing 2-2 at home to Malta the other night.
“The Faroes also took the lead against Austria, so we know we can afford to take them lightly. But, at the same time, we do understand that it’s a game we have to win.”
The sense of despondency at having to come from behind to earn a draw for the second game running was hard to ignore on Sunday.
Clarke agreed with the assessment the first half had been poor from his side, but believes Scotland’s response to going behind showed the progress being made by the national team.
He said: “It was one point more than we managed to get the last two times we have been in Israel, so let’s take the positive from that.
“I wasn’t happy with the way we started the game, because I felt we never really got a grip of it in the first half hour. I thought we had weathered the storm before half-time and the changes I made at break were already in my mind.
“I thought it was a good performance in the second half and once again the players showed their character to get the goal and get back into the match.
“But if we are going to improve the way we want to, then we need to be good enough to get a grip of these games from the start and score the first goal ourselves. That’s what I’m looking for.
“When we played Israel last November, we lost the first goal again and ended up having to chase the game after that. But we couldn’t get the goal back.
“So I’m looking at the positives, because this time we were able to do that. But I believe we can be better than that and we will be better than that as the team develops.
“Now we have to look forward to the Faroes on Wednesday night and make sure we get that first win under our belts.”