Scottish Daily Mail
SCOTLAND v CYPRUS FOUR KEY BATTLES
JOHN McGINN v GRIGORIS KASTANOS
McGinn has been Scotland’s talisman for a long time now and has chipped in with some huge goals for Steve Clarke’s side. The Aston Villa man has 15 goals in 52 caps, including three in his last five games for the national side. Kastanos plies his trade for Salernitana in the Italian Serie A and offers decent pedigree in the Cypriot midfield. He’s likely to operate in a more advanced role, similar to what McGinn will do for Scotland, and both men will look to get forward and contribute in attack.
RYAN PORTEOUS v DEMETRIS CHRISTOFI
Porteous (right) joked earlier this week that the Watford fans have dubbed him the Scottish Bobby
Moore since he made the move down south. He’s certainly been making a big impression for the English Championship side and looks to have won the trust of Clarke. Porteous was outstanding in the 0-0 draw against Ukraine last September which secured a play-off spot for the Euros. He proved a lot of people wrong that night and will come up against an experienced campaigner in Christofi, the 34-year-old who has eight goals in
CHE ADAMS v KONSTANTINOS LAIFIS
Adams has netted ten goals in all competitions for Southampton this season, which isn’t a bad return for a team who have ben struggling. Scotland should look to utilise
KICK-OFF 2PM, HAMPDEN PARK. LIVE ON VIAPLAY SPORTS. REF: D STRUKAN (CRO). his pace and movement to stretch the Cypriot defence as much as possible. Laifis plays for Standard Liege in Belgium and is viewed as a fairly solid operator in the heart of defence. Adams must make life uncomfortable for him and drag him away from the centre of the pitch, opening up space for McGinn and others.
CALLUM McGREGOR v ALEX GOGIC
McGregor is set to win his 50th cap this afternoon, a terrific achievement for a player who has been a model of consistency for club and country. The Celtic skipper (right) will look to pull the strings for Scotland but, in Gogic, he’ll see a player he knows all too well from the Scottish Premiership. St Mirren man Gogic can either play in defence or in midfield and will look to reduce space for the likes of McGregor to operate.