Gordon Smith has hailed Steve Clarke for fixing Scotland’s Andy Robertson and Kieran Tierney dilemma.
Nevertheless the previous Scottish Soccer Affiliation (SFA) chief fears the nationwide workforce boss has one other conundrum to resolve as children Billy Gilmour and Nathan Patterson push for a begin.
Clarke has give you a novel method of getting the very best out of his pair of world-class left-backs, with skipper Robertson pushed right into a wing-back function and Tierney given licence to roam ahead on the overlap from the left of a again three.
That crafty plan has silenced those that claimed it was unattainable to accommodate each of his star defenders in the identical line-up.
However Smith reckons the emergence of Chelsea teenager Gilmour and his former Rangers youth academy team-mate Patterson may depart Clarke with one other headache.
The pair are brief on first-team expertise however brimming with potential, and there are requires each to be fast-tracked into the beginning line-up for Monday’s Euro 2020 opener with the Czech Republic at Hampden.
That will go towards the Scotland boss’ notoriously conservative instincts however Smith insists it’s time to throw warning to the wind.
The previous Rangers frontman mentioned: “I am actually excited. It may be a incredible match.
“We have a fairly tough group however because of the job Steve Clarke’s completed, I am extra assured than I have been in a very long time over the nationwide workforce.
“He is completed properly sorting that Robertson-Tierney state of affairs. You see Tierney overlapping Robertson from centre-back.
“I keep in mind folks saying he ought to solely play one in every of them however they each needed to play, even when Tierney went to right-back. You want your finest gamers on the pitch. Tierney is excellent.
“However when you’re taking a look at getting your finest gamers on the market, Gilmour and Patterson should be thought-about too.
“Definitely, if Scott McTominay is pulled again into defence, Gilmour would go in there. He is an impressive participant.
“I first noticed him when he was aged 9 in a Rangers-Celtic youth recreation and he ran the present.
“When he went to Chelsea I puzzled about his physicality however he appears to deal with that.
“It is a powerful one for Steve Clarke to see if he can match him in someplace. You noticed him the opposite evening when he got here on towards Luxembourg that he can play at that stage.
“I assumed younger Patterson was excellent when he went on the opposite evening too.
“Steve simply has to have the idea that they’ve the standard to do their job, no matter age and expertise. OK, Patterson’s hardly had any video games, however the ones he has performed for Rangers he was excellent. He is received the standard and he is scored in Europe.”
‘Scotland workforce a throwback to golden period’
Scotland are set to style their first chew of match motion since 1998.
However Smith reckons there’s a whiff of the 1970s and 1980s about Clarke’s squad as he harked again to Scotland’s golden period when the nationwide workforce certified for 5 World Cups in a row with a spine made up of English-based stars.
Smith – who additionally performed for Kilmarnock and Brighton throughout his taking part in days – mentioned: “When Steve Clarke received appointed, I assumed he was the suitable man. Two years in the past, he took Kilmarnock to 3rd within the league. Now they have been relegated. There’s the distinction.
“We have two dwelling video games towards the Czechs and Croatia – that is large. 4 of the very best third-placed groups get into the knockout stage, so there’s an actual likelihood we may get via.
“The England recreation at Wembley is an thrilling one, particularly if we win the primary recreation.
“It is a good period for us to play them as a result of we have most likely received extra gamers taking part in for large golf equipment on the highest stage in England than we have had for some time.
“Not so way back, Darren Fletcher was nearly the one English Premier League participant in our workforce.
“It is going again to a time when Scotland was seen as a market for English golf equipment. A lot of the high groups had Scottish gamers.
“Liverpool had Dalglish, Souness and Hansen. Man United had Albiston, McQueen and Jordan. I used to be the one Scotsman at Brighton proper sufficient!”