Captain Robbo won’t be skipping any responsibility
ANDY ROBERTSON has extra responsibility as Scotland captain – but knows that the armband comes with greater scrutiny.
However the Liverpool ace, 24, insists he is strong enough to cope with any flak which may fly his way after Scotland’s humiliating loss to Israel on Thursday night.
The Nations League defeat inHaifa – 2-1 by a team ranked 94th in the world – has seen Alex McLeish and his players come under fire.
But Robertson claims he can handle being made scapegoat as skipper and has vowed they will get it right.
He said: “You feel extra responsibility as I have to try and help lift the boys and all the staff.
“Everyone was down after that performance.
“People can react negatively to me as that is all part and parcel of it.
“Since I was made captain it has happened a bit more as they see you as a scapegoat.
“That’s fine, I can deal with that and take it on the chin.
“I have to up my perfor mances. We are all pulling in the right direction.
“Nobody is ever going to be comfortable with being made a scapegoat.
“If 10 people came into your work and started slating you – in any line of work – then you are not going to be very comfortable.
“If people want to use me as a scapegoat, that’s fine.
“I know that performance wasn’t good enough and people are going to talk.
“That’s how the world works now with social media and it is about trying to stay away from that and bounce back. My performance was not good enough. I’m not coming out and saying that I played well and all the rest were rubbish.
“I was one of the worst, if not the worst in my head, so I’ve got to be better.”
Kieran Tierney shouldered the blame for the defeat as his own goal sealed Israel’s win but Robertson insists nobody is blaming the Celtic ace.
He said: “He’s a young lad who thought it was his fault and he came in and apologised.
“But we didn’t all say, ‘Okay KT, you take the blame!’.
“Everybody was a bit confused by it but that’s the way KT is and the lads said ‘Don’t be stupid, none of us performed’.”
The conundrum remains for Scotland as to how to get two class left-backs – Robertson and Tierney – into the starting line-up.
McLeish has opted for a 3-5-2 formation with Tierney in a back three and Robertson as a wing-back.
But neither look comfortable in their new roles.
Robertson added: “It’s a tough one. Playing left midfield is a completely different position to left-back.
“As a kid I sometimes played there but I find it a lot better with someone in front of me.
“I like linking up, playing inside and running off. I think that’s where my strength is.
“But if the manager chooses to go with three at the back then both of us have picked up a position we need to get better at.
“If the manager pulls me and says I am playing here then you have to take it and try to better yourself.”