Scotland Always Under Pressure To Perform Well

30 August 2011 10:03
No matter waht clubs sides do, the national side is always under pressure to deliver good results Scottish football took a knock this month with no clubs in any European competition in September. There is still the chance that Celtic will be reinstated into the Europa League as Sion played ineligible players in their games with the Glasgow side. With no SPL fixtures this weekend it will be down to the national side to show that football in this country is not in terminal decline. Scotland play the Czech Republic on Saturday in the first of a double-header of EURO2012 qualifying games. When announcing his squad last week for the games against the Czech Republic and Lithuania, manager Craig Levein reminded the assembled press that Scotland were well represented in the English leagues with players in his squad. He feels the national side should not feel additional pressure to improve the standing of the Scottish game  SFA president Campbell Ogilvie agrees that no extra pressure on the national side to help restore sporting pride in the country. Ogilvie said: "There is always an expectation and always pressure Obviously there is a disappointment that the Scottish teams are out of Europe and that, in the supporters' eyes, adds more pressure to the international matches, but even without that it was always a massive game for the Scottish team. Craig Levein has certainly been working very hard over the course of the last year and before that to restructure the team. But we are all aware of the importance of the game on Saturday and next Tuesday." Ogilvie was in Glasgow on Monday to help make the draw for the first round of the Scottish Cup, sponsored this season by William Hill. He stressed the importance of sponsorship for the national cup tournament. But he believes the "feel-good" factor which would accompany the national team's participation in the finals of a major tournament is particularly important. He went on: "We haven't been to the finals of a major tournament since 1998 and it is not just the financial aspect of qualifying, it is the feel-good factor for the country in general. The game obviously benefits financially but we can't underestimate the feel-good factor for the supporters. In the nature of football in this country, many would say that the feel-good factor is more important but the two go hand-in-hand and we do need finance in the game."