The Scottish Mail on Sunday
Strachan’s despair as brave Scots f ight back only to throw away victory in dying seconds
GORDON STRACHAN summed up the feelings of a distraught football nation as he digested the greatest result of his managerial career and a famous win over England being snatched from his grasp by Harry Kane.
Scotland were seconds away from beating the Auld Enemy and reviving Russia 2018 qualifying hopes thanks to two Leigh Griffiths free-kicks in the last three minutes of normal time.
Then England captain Kane struck in the 93rd minute to pinch a point from Hampden and leave Scotland languishing in fourth spot and four points off a play-off place.
When asked if the draw felt like a devastating defeat, Strachan replied: ‘Aye. Yes, it does. We’re talking about one pass. One in the air. One header to somewhere else and we win the game.
‘We tried to protect ourselves from the excitement of scoring, we didn’t protect ourselves enough. And they equalised.
‘That could have been my best result as a manager, and I’ve been lucky enough to get some good ones against Man United and AC Milan and teams like that.’
Strachan was too dejected in the immediate aftermath of the drama to consider where the draw leaves the slim chances of clinching the runners-up berth in Group F in the autumn.
‘I’m not in a thinking mood just now, all my thinking is left out on that touchline,’ said Strachan. ‘It all went. I’m trying my best to be coherent here and maybe it’s not working.
‘But it’s very hard to think. I’m too tired to think about where we’re going and what we’re going to do, what’s in the future. I just want to go home.’