Aviva Stadium

Next Game

Rep Ire v Scotland

Saturday, 13 June 2015, 17:00

European Qualifiers Group D

Last Game

Scotland 6 - 1 Gibraltar

Sunday, 29 March 2015, 17:00

European Qualifiers Group D

Handle with care

Gordon Strachan explains the difference between coaching at club and at international level.

Last Updated: 02/01/14 at 17:24 Post Comment

The current Scotland manager has galvanised his country since taking the reins in January of this year, winning five of his 10 games in charge, a run which includes two victories over Croatia in World Cup qualifying.

Scotland failed to reach the 2014 showpiece in Brazil - meaning they have not played in a summer Finals since the 1998 World Cup in France - but there are plenty of promising signs, including the emergence of pacey Watford wideman Ikechi Anya.

And Strachan, who has also managed Coventry, Southampton, Celtic and Middlesbrough, says that you cannot treat your international players the same way you would your club player.

"Scotland players play for Scotland off their own back - you only get appearance money if you qualify for something," explained Strachan on Goals on Sunday.

"If I am paying you £40,000 a week I can demand something of you, I can tell them what to do and don't even think of talking to me about it, just do it.

"At an international level you can only ask them to do things - a club manager level you can demand things.

"You also have to explain why you are playing a certain system - you say you may play different at your club but for the group we have here we have to play this system because it suits us as a group."

It may seem that because the players want to be there it is actually easier to manage them, however Strachan is not so sure.

"Some of the managers I played under made me play through fear - it did me no harm whatsoever. I used to cry a lot but I did the best for the team," laughed Strachan who won 50 caps for Scotland and also played for Manchester United, Leeds United and Aberdeen.

Pressure cooker

On a more serious note, Strachan says that putting pressure on players is part of the job of a manager to see whether they can handle it or not.

"Managers put demands on players to see how they deal with it - if they crumble mentally then you know they will crumble in a game. You need to make sure everyone is mentally strong when those crises points come in a game.

"Players will do alright when they are wining, but in a crisis you will know who you think will crumble, crumbles. Then you think 'why did I pick him, I knew it was going to happen.'

"In a football feed you cannot hide - your true character comes out."

Despite not qualifying for Brazil, Strachan is happy where Scotland are at: "We have gradually got a system with which we are comfortable with. Hopefully now everyone who comes along knows what system we are going to play and they can ease into that easily."

Related News

Most Commented

Readers' Comments

I

still can't see the Phil Jones thing that some people go on about. Whenever I watch him play it's a repeat of headless chicken meets a gurning Bambi on ice for 90 minutes.

diabolicaldiaby
F365's Top Ten Defenders Of The Season

P

robably the first list I've come across in a long time where I agree with a large majority of what was written. Can't agree with everything though, Zaba has had an awful season by his standards, I'd put Monreal (a player who I've never rated) up there, gotta give credit where it's due, he's really stepped up his game.

scroteymcbooger
F365's Top Ten Defenders Of The Season

S

ome top analysis here..... UNITED WOULD BE TOP IF IT WEREN'T FOR ALL THEM GAMES THEY LOST

benvo81
United Progress Stifled By Bottom-Half Record

Footer 365

Barcelona 3-0 Bayern Munich: Lionel Messi double puts Barca in control

Two goals from Lionel Messi helped Barcelona beat Bayern Munich 3-0 in the first leg of the Champions League semi-final.

Graham Taylor rejects claims he was asked to cap number of black players in England side

Graham Taylor has denied claims that the Football Association tried to cap the number of black players when he was in charge of the England team.

Spanish football could be shut down from May 16 over TV rights argument

La Liga faces being shut down from May 16 over an argument between Spain's football federation and the Government.

Mail Box

Coutinho Better Than Cazorla And Cesc...

Philippe Coutinho has outperformed Santi Cazorla AND Cesc Fabregas, while Arsenal need no new signings. We also have mails on Olivier Giroud and shopping lists...

Giroud Is More Than Good Enough...

Olivier Giroud and Theo Walcott are integral to Arsenal's title hopes next season. There's also more on handballs, Juventus, and Ronaldo holding Bale back...

© 2015 Sky Ltd. All Rights Reserved A Sky Sports Digital Media company