There will be no hic­cup this time round

The Sunday Post (Inverness) - - Post Match -

He ad­mits that be­ing part of a Scot­land side that lost in Kau­nas felt like a real em­bar­rass­ment.

But the for­mer Hearts and Ever­ton full-back says Gor­don Stra­chan’s men can’t af­ford any slip-ups when they play in the Baltic state on Fri­day night.

The Scots lost 1-0 there in 2003 when Berti Vogts was man­ager.

Nay­smith said: “I was also in a team that won 2-1 with Wal­ter Smith in charge, but they were tight games and Lithua­nia car­ried a threat.

“We found it very dif­fi­cult to play against them.

“It felt a bit of an em­bar­rass­ment los­ing there be­cause peo­ple didn’t re­alise they were ac­tu­ally an OK team.

“Now some peo­ple have got a lit­tle bit more re­spect for them.

“They have good play­ers with tech­ni­cal abil­ity. Scot­land don’t have a di­vine right to turn up and beat coun­tries like Lithua­nia, Ge­or­gia or Be­larus.

“Back then, it was a big blow for us, be­cause it had been a game we were ex­pected to win.

“It cost us points in the group and there al­ways seems to have been a re­sult in each cam­paign that throws us a bit.

“In one of my first games, we played Belgium and we were 2-0 up against 10 men be­fore they came back and made it 2-2.

“There al­ways seems to have been a re­sult in ev­ery cam­paign where we look back and say: ‘If we’d just done that in that game we’d have been OK’.

“Hope­fully the one in Lithua­nia isn’t go­ing to be one of those games.

“I think it’ll be re­ally tight. There will be one goal in it and I be­lieve it’ll be in Scot­land’s favour.

“We know what needs to be done.

“I don’t think four points from this game and the one against Malta will be enough. We need to get six points.

“The play­ers may not ad­mit that pub­licly, but I think they know they need to try to get two wins.”

Nay­smith, 38, now man­ager of Queen of the South, doesn’t be­lieve that play­ing on an ar­ti­fi­cial sur­face at the LFF Sta­dium in Vil­nius should pose a prob­lem for the play­ers.

He went on: “Older peo­ple, like me, never re­ally played on it, but the lads at 23 or 24 will have been used to ar­ti­fi­cial sur­faces grow­ing up.

“I don’t think it will af­fect the game in any way.

“If you want to look for ex­cuses, you’ll find them.

“If Scot­land don’t get the re­sult they’re look­ing for, they won’t be able to blame that purely on the park.

“For me, it’s part and par­cel of foot­ball now.”

■ Gary Nay­smith tan­gles with Lithua­nia’s Igoris Mori­nas in 2003.

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