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Scotland B 3-0 N Ireland B

George Boyd was influential for Scotland
Boyd enjoyed a good first outing in the colours of Scotland

Scotland turned in an encouraging display to earn a B international victory at a rain-lashed Broadwood.

Rangers defender Andy Webster opened the scoring on 47 minutes, slamming the ball home after his header had been blocked by keeper Jonathan Tuffey.

Scotland's David Marshall made saves to deny Andy Little and Oliver Norwood.

The lively George Boyd then smacked in a wonderful strike from 20 yards and set up Leigh Griffiths to slip home the third goal with five minutes left.

Scotland manager George Burley described the game as "a worthwhile exercise" and had words of praise for the goal-scorers and Motherwell midfielder Stephen Hughes, who shone in the first half before a deluge made the pitch very heavy.

The Northern Ireland team were younger and less experienced than the hosts and soon found themselves under pressure.

An early Stevie Hammell free-kick appeared to beat Tuffey at the near post and cross the line before the Partick Thistle keeper scooped it back out.

And Tuffey was called into action to stop shots from Steven Naismith and Chris Burke before the interval.

A flash-flood at the break put the game in some doubt but when play resumed with puddles forming on the pitch, Scotland took the lead within two minutes.

Ian Black played a short corner with Naismith and when his cross came over, Webster's header was saved by Tuffey before the Rangers played followed in to ram home the rebound.

Scotland keeper Marshall was forced to dive at the feet of Little to prevent an equaliser after Mark Reynolds failed to clear his lines.

As a raft of substitutions began to take its toll on the flow of the game, Northern Ireland continued to press for the leveller.

In the 70th minute Norwood drew a fantastic save from Marshall with a 30-yard free-kick, the former Celtic keeper leaping acrobatically to tip the ball over the crossbar.

Six minutes later Boyd made the game certain when he took a pass from Griffiths and rifled the ball low past Tuffey.

And in the 85th minute Boyd returned the compliment when he sent Griffiths clear of the visiting defence and the Livingston teenager showed great confidence to roll the ball under the diving Tuffey.

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see also
Gough queries Scots call for Boyd
06 May 09 |  Internationals

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