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Scottish FA stand by Strachan

The Scottish Football Association has announced Gordon Strachan will stay on as national team manager despite a disappointing start to their World Cup qualifying campaign.

Scotland’s solitary victory in four matches came against minnows Malta and their hopes of reaching Russia 2018 have been damaged by back-to-back 3-0 defeats versus Slovakia and England.

In the aftermath of the latter reverse to their neighbours at Wembley last Friday, Strachan responded tersely to questions over his future but the former Celtic boss’ employers have decided he should remain in charge.

“The board have considered the team’s performance since the start of the campaign and subsequently discussed the disappointing points total after four matches,” said Scottish FA chief executive Stewart Regan in a statement.

“Gordon shared the disappointment of the board and, of course, the fans. He is adamant, however, that we can recover the position and believes a play-off place still to be attainable.

“The board are convinced that he still has the hunger for this challenge and we have four home qualifiers in 2017 to rejuvenate our campaign. We support Gordon unanimously in improving our qualification prospects.”

Strachan added: “We were all extremely disappointed with the result on Friday night but having reflected on our performance, I still believe we can get ourselves back into contention in the group.

“There are still 18 points to play for and the players, the staff and I, as in previous games, will give everything we have to turn things around.

“I have said consistently that our fans deserve success and a return to a major tournament finals.”

Scotland last reached a major tournament at the 1998 World Cup in France and resume action in Group F at home to Slovenia in March before welcoming England for the return fixture in June.

Thu 17 Nov, 2016
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