Archive for February, 2008

Macedonia v Scotland, Skopje here we come

Posted in Tartan Army, Tartan Army Abroad, World Cup 2010 with tags , , on February 26, 2008 by Tartan Army Soldier

We’ll be on the way to Macedonia this September. Accommodation and travel is booked up. Days are booked off work. And five of us will be making our way from Glasgow/London to sunny Skopje to see Scotland start their journey to the World Cup finals in South Africa. It’s over 6 months away, but none of us can wait!!

FIFA Rankings Jan 2008 – Scotland hold on to 14th position

Posted in FIFA, Scotland Squad with tags , on February 16, 2008 by Tartan Army Soldier

The new FIFA rankings came out the other day. Good news: Scotland are still in 14th position.

Having not played on 6 Feb it was uncertain whether Scotland would keep this lofty position. However they have. Despite other teams performing well while Scotland did otherwise, Burley’s new Scotland squad will start their next game in the same respectable position. And with Croatia being the next team to beat, Scotland could be back on the up very soon:)

FIFA Rankings February 2008

Scotland v Croatia tickets offered to Scotland Supporters Club

Posted in Friendlies, Tartan Army with tags , , on February 14, 2008 by Tartan Army Soldier

The SFA have offered tickets to Scotland Supporters Club members for the Scotland v Croatia match on 26 March. The letters arrived this morning. Each member is allowed one ticket and must apply by 29 February. No news yet about sales to the general public.

I’m undecided about going. It’d be good to see if Scotland can succeed where the England squad failed. If I don’t go I’m sure to be watching the game in the Rob Roy in London. And I expect it to be mobbed. It’ll be a game well woth seeing wherever I choose to watch it.

Tickets for the Scotland v Croatia match are believed to be going on sale to the public on 6 March at 9am. Tel. 08444 811 818

World Cup 2010 – South Africa in doubt

Posted in FIFA, World Cup 2010 with tags , , , on February 11, 2008 by Tartan Army Soldier

I’ve just been reading about the woes concerning South Africa and theor ability to hold the Wold Cup in 2010. It seems that past doubts are gathering steam. With security concerns as well as monetary and infrastructure problems to contend with there is talk about moving the competition to another nation. With the occasional Scotland fan suggesting “England deserve it more than South Africa” matters are indeed dire.

South Africa does not have the reputation of being the safest destination. However, with the money involved in the World Cup and the certain massive influx of tourists and their money, criminal gangs and opportunists are believed to be looking to exploit the event to thier own ends. And they arn’t the only ones. As well as pickpockets and muggers, organised crime inside South Africa and from surrounding countries are thought to be looking to make massive profits from drugs and prostitution. On top of that there will be the expected accompaniment of violence. None of it looks pleasant.

Doubts have been heightened lately with the murder of Austrian Soccer star Peter Burgstaller. The ex-SV Salzburg goalkeeper was shot dead on a golf course near Durban, the motive for which was believed to be robbery.

With all the bad publicity about South Africa, suggestions are being made to move the competition. Opinions have been expressed that the event should be hosted in a safer, more reliable country. Germany is the most obvious nation. Having just hosted a successful World Cup, everyone can be assured of a relatively safe, financially stable competition. Other possible venues are the USA, Australia and England, all of which have modern stadiums and relatively low crime.

It would be a shame if South Africa were to lose out on World Cup 2010. However, I have to say I’m not overly keen on getting mugged, or worse. While in Lithuania recently, fans were getting mugged on a regular basis. Indeed one of the guys in our hostel was turned over by Lithuanian thugs leaving him in a really bad way. With that in mind I think that safety does deserve to be a primary concern. Plus any failing for the safety of fans can only have a detrimental effect for the future of the competition as a whole.

If the venue changes, I vote Australia then England on the basis of Australia not having hosted the event and England being close at hand for Scotland fans. Let’s hope its not necessary.

Holland deafeat Croatia – Shows threat to Scotland

Posted in Friendlies, Scotland Squad, World Cup 2010 with tags , , on February 7, 2008 by Tartan Army Soldier

Last night Holland showed just how much of a threat they are to Scotland’s World Cup 2010 ambitions. While the Scotland squad rested, the four other Group 9 teams took part in friendlies. And Holland showed themselves to be a very capable team, defeating the mighty Croatia 3-0.

The importance of this result is considerable. Only Group winners progress to the World Cup finals. While Norway, Iceland and Macedonia produced results of not great worry to Scotland, Holland’s trancing of Croatia suggests they are a formidable team, one that Scotland will need to work hard to defeat. It looks like Craig Burley’s squad have their work seriously cut out for them.

 I suggest looking on the Dutch like the French – formidable, but beatable.

England v Scotland postponed

Posted in England, Friendlies, Scotland Squad on February 1, 2008 by Tartan Army Soldier

The SFA have effectively postponed this summer’s England v Scotland game. Thought to be planned for May, the match has been called off because Celtic and Rangers players will be unavailable due to club obligations. The match is now being rescheduled for later in the year.