Defiant midfielder John McGinn insists Scotland can still qualify from the Euro 2020 groups – but must do it the hard way by beating England at Wembley.
The Scots suffered an opening day 2-0 Group D loss to Czech Republic at Hampden in front of 12,000 fans.
Scotland’s first appearance at a major tournament in 23 years has started disastrously, but McGinn insists there will be no sulking from the squad.
Instead they will regroup and go again in the hunt for a win at Wembley on Friday night that would blow Group D wide open.
McGinn said: “If we can go down to Wembley which is a free hit and a game where we need to take a point at least, but our aim is to get three points.
“Our aim is to get out of this group.”
After the loss to the Czechs, McGinn accepts that, if Steve Clarke’s side are to become the first Scotland squad to qualify from the groups, they will have to do it the “hard way”.
With games looming against England and beaten World Cup 2016 finalists Croatia, the Scots must secure at least one victory to have any chance any chance of progressing.
Fundamental to that is taking chances after they spurned a succession of scoring opportunities, were denied by an in-form keeper and also hit the bar.
McGinn said: “We are here at a major tournament and you need to show your quality.
“I had a couple of chances and the other boys had chances.
“If we want to compete at this level, we need to take those chances and ultimately we were punished for that.”
Patrik Schick broke Scotland hearts with a first half header to punish slack defending.
The attacker then netted an audacious long-range effort from just inside the Scotland half that left keeper David Marshall backtracking desperately to no avail.
💙 While it wasn't the result we were looking for today, thank you for your truly incredible support – whether you were in Hampden or watching on from elsewhere.#EURO2020 | #SCO pic.twitter.com/7uCXThBN0i
— Scotland National Team (@ScotlandNT) June 14, 2021
McGinn said: “I thought we played pretty well in the first half without threatening too much.
“We got in behind them, but the first goal was a poor one to lose.
“It was a brilliant header, but from our point of view we are extremely disappointed by that.
“You don’t want to lose a goal from a set-play or the second phase.
“The second goal was a brilliant strike, but again we can do better.”
Scotland suffered a set-back when Arsenal full-back Kieran Tierney was ruled out of the match with a calf injury.
Manager Steve Clarke is hopeful the left-sided centre-half will be fit for the the clash against the English where the Scots will bid to revitalise their campaign.
McGinn said: “We played alright and the 2-0 score-line probably flatters them a wee bit.
“But they found the quality at the right moments and we need to find that on Friday.
“We can either sulk about that or we can go to Wembley with the same attitude and hopefully get the right result.”