Scotland 1, Macedonia 1. (Bring back Bertie, All Is Forgiven)

How Scotland escaped from the game last night with a draw is a complete mystery to me.  Macedonia were excellent, with Goran Pandev in particular outstanding.  They must be returning to Skopje today wondering how the hell they did not leave Glasgow with all three points.  We are only five days into a qualifying campaign that runs over 13 months, and hope is evaporating fast.  Under Craig Levein’s stewardship Scotland will not have a hope in hell of getting to Brazil in 2014.

He must go, now.  The next match is away to Wales in October.  This is a game we MUST win now.  It is also a game I am quite keen to go to, but I am struggling to arouse any enthusiasm after the last two inept displays.  Three wins in ten competitive matches is not good enough.  Craig Levein is completely out of his depth, and if the man had a shred of self-awareness he would know this.

Last night’s attendance was reportedly the lowest Hampden has seen for a competitive match in many years.  This shows the lack of faith the Tartan Army currently has in it’s manager.  With the limited resources at our disposal, it is a form of suicide to persist with a man who can’t even keep the ’12th man’ onside.  We need inspired and reinvigorated.  Craig Levein is not the man to do that.

Bring back Bertie!  All is forgiven!

Scotland 0, Serbia 0 (a Doombar Laden Reflection)

It’s no fun being Scottish and a follower of the national football team.  We’re crap, and we know we are.

The national affliction is hope, it is what kills us, every single time. And just like my love life, it is a glorious failure, snatched from the jaws of victory.

The game today was a case in point.

Before the match today I read in the Scottish papers that our experience had made us stronger.   We had learned from our defeats, and we had an “embarrassment of riches” with which to clinch success.  Optimism rode high, after decades of failures, this time it would be different.  We were destined for the Promised Land.

The game started.

Apprehensive from the off, the superior opposition showed it’s class from the start.  It took time for us to be confident in this kind of company, even with a full house brimming with belief.

Serbia settled quickly, and we struggled to get going.  There was the odd memorable flourish, enough to get the hopes up, but no consistency.  The pre-match promises failed to materialise.

I spent a lot of the match biting my nails, clinging to hope.

The crowd waited patiently for the players to get us excited.  It happened in fits and starts, only to fizzle out in disappointment.

Hope turns to despair.

We try again against Macedonia on Tuesday.  Hope springs eternal.  It’ll be the bloody death of me…