Alex McLeish: Scotland were nervous during laboured win over San Marino

24 March 2019, 19:57 | Updated: 25 March 2019, 10:10

Alex McLeish admits his Scotland side were nervous in parts as they laboured to a 2-0 win over minnows San Marino on Sunday. 

  • San Marino 0-2 Scotland
  • As it happened

Scotland got off the mark in uninspiring fashion in their European Qualifiers Group I clash, but McLeish said the midweek 3-0 defeat by Kazakhstan left a few players in their side shell-shocked.

Goals from Kenny McLean and Johnny Russell saw Scotland through, but the lacklustre display over the lowest-ranked international side in world football prompted travelling fans to jeer at half-time and full-time.

McLeish told Sky Sports: "We started really well, played well getting the first goal early. We tried to push for another, and because we didn't get it we were a wee bit nervy.

"I know it's been a tough few days for everybody, and when we got the second goal I think we saw the team relax and go on to create four or five other chances.

  • European Qualifiers Group I table

"We got a whirlwind start by the Kazakhs, I think it left a few of us shell-shocked. We've dealt with the second game, if not fantastically, but it was professional."

McLeish accepted that the fans, who displayed their anger at the SFA throughout, expected more goals in San Marino, but said the most important aim was to win.

"We spoke about quality at the beginning of the game, then it was surprising to see a few passes go astray. We expected the level a bit better than today, but maybe the rest in Kazakhstan impacted a few people as well.

"I think [the fans] were looking for five or six, to be honest, and we accept that. It was obviously very important we won the game, and dealt with it. In the end we should have had four or five."