Strachan to stay on as Scot­land boss

Malta Independent - - SPORT -

Gor­don Strachan is to re­main as Scot­land coach after the Scot­tish Foot­ball As­so­ci­a­tion board gave the 59-year-old its “unan­i­mous” back­ing.

Chief ex­ec­u­tive Ste­wart Re­gan is­sued a state­ment after its re­view of a poor start to their World Cup cam­paign.

“The board are con­vinced that he still has the hunger for this chal­lenge and we have four home qual­i­fiers in 2017 to re­ju­ve­nate our cam­paign,” he said.

“We sup­port Gor­don unan­i­mously in im­prov­ing our qual­i­fi­ca­tion prospects.”

There had been spec­u­la­tion about Strachan’s po­si­tion after Fri­day’s 3-0 de­feat by Eng­land at Wem­b­ley.

It left the Scots in fifth place, with only four points from their open­ing four games in Group F.

The SFA ex­plained that Strachan had pro­vided his feed­back on the cam­paign and his views on the team’s prospects in 2017 to the eight-strong board.

“The board have con­sid­ered the team’s per­for­mance since the start of the cam­paign and sub­se­quently dis­cussed the dis­ap­point­ing points to­tal after four matches,” said Re­gan.

Scot­land are left dis­ap­pointed at Wem­b­ley

Scot­land are fifth in Group F after their 3-0 de­feat by Eng­land

“Gor­don shared the dis­ap­point­ment of the board and, of course, the fans.

“He is adamant, how­ever, that we can re­cover the po­si­tion and be­lieves a play-off place still to be at­tain­able.”

Only the nine group win­ners are guar­an­teed a place at the 2018 fi­nals in Rus­sia and the Scots trail sec­tion lead­ers Eng­land by six points.

How­ever, the eight best­placed run­ners-up will have a sec­ond chance via play-offs and Strachan stressed his be­lief in the play­ers and their abil­ity to qual­ify.

“We were all ex­tremely dis­ap­pointed with the re­sult on Fri­day night,” he said.

“But, hav­ing re­flected on our per­for­mance, I still be­lieve we can get our­selves back into con­tention in the group.

“There are still 18 points to play for and the play­ers, the staff and I, as in pre­vi­ous games, will give ev­ery­thing we have to turn things around.

“I have said con­sis­tently that our fans de­serve suc­cess and a re­turn to a ma­jor tour­na­ment fi­nals.

“Al­though we have had a dif­fi­cult start to the cam­paign, I firmly be­lieve that this group of play­ers, to­gether with our sup­port­ers, can max­imise our chances of a play-off place, start­ing with the home match against Slove­nia in March.”

Scot­land man­ager Gor­don Strachan has been con­firmed as na­tional coach

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