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Page last updated at 15:27 GMT, Saturday, 9 October 2010 16:27 UK

Scotland still on course, says Gary Caldwell

Scots still on course - Caldwell

Gary Caldwell insists Scotland can still clinch second spot in their Euro 2012 qualifying group despite their defeat by Czech Republic.

Scotland lost 1-0 in Prague - their first defeat of the campaign - and next play host to world champions Spain.

"We are still on course for finishing second," Scotland and Wigan defender Caldwell told BBC Scotland.

"That was probably always the objective. Spain on Tuesday is a game we will go into and give everything."

Roman Hubnik scored the Czech's winner in the 70th minute as Scotland coach Craig Levein's ultra-defensive formation failed to secure the draw it was designed to produce.

Spain, meanwhile, will arrive in Glasgow having taken over from the Scots at the top of the group following a 3-1 win over Lithuania.

For 70 minutes, we were getting the result we wanted

Scotland defender Gary Caldwell

"Everyone in the world wouldn't expect us to get anything and that's when Scotland are usually at their best," insisted Caldwell.

"So we can have a right go on Tuesday night."

His words hint at a more adventurous approach than the one adopted in Prague, where in-form striker Kenny Miller was left on the bench until 15 minutes to go.

Caldwell defended the ultra-cautious approach, claiming it almost paid off for the Scots.

"I thought it worked very well," he said. "They looked very frustrated, you could see that in their play and I don't think they had many chances.

"In the second half, they started to get a few more efforts and Allan McGregor made some good saves.

"But it was working, it was 0-0 and a point would have been a great result. It was just disappointing to lose from a set-piece."

Asked if he was surprised when Levein revealed his system to the players, the Wigan player replied: "Not at all. He's got to pick a team that he thinks can get a result.

Roman Hubnik headed Czech Republic's winner against Scotland
Roman Hubnik headed the Czech Republic's winner against Scotland

"For 70 minutes, we were getting the result we wanted and that's his decision. I think it was working.

"We worked on it all week in training, we watched videos and we understood what we were doing."

Miller and fellow striker Chris Iwelumo were both thrown into the action with Scotland trailing in a bid to save the game, but Caldwell did not think there was a feeling that they had left it too late to change tactics.

"I think there is just frustration at the result," said the defender. "We felt we could have got something here and we didn't.

"That's the only frustration the players and everyone in the dressing-room has got."

Caldwell has yet to play a first-team match for Wigan this season after recovering from two hip operations and he was pleased to last until being substituted with 15 minutes remaining.

"I felt tired as the game wore on, but I think that's only natural," he added.

"But I gave it everything I had and the manager took me off probably after a little bit longer than I thought I would have lasted. I'm quite happy."



see also
Levein's Scots fail to impress
09 Oct 10 |  Scotland
Prague pundits' reaction
08 Oct 10 |  Scotland
Bilek lauds winning Czech players
08 Oct 10 |  Scotland
Czech Republic 1-0 Scotland
08 Oct 10 |  Scotland
Chick Young's view
07 Oct 10 |  Scotland
Victory in Prague can be achieved
07 Oct 10 |  Scotland
Bardsley proud Scot after U-turn
06 Oct 10 |  Scotland
Caldwell keen to aid Scots' cause
04 Oct 10 |  Scotland
Czechs without Baros for Scotland
03 Oct 10 |  Scotland
Naismith buoyed by Rangers form
01 Oct 10 |  Rangers
Scots call on Gordon and Caldwell
30 Sep 10 |  Scotland
Mackie proud of Scotland call-up
30 Sep 10 |  Scotland
Xavi to miss Spain's Glasgow trip
30 Sep 10 |  Scotland
Boyd trying too hard - Strachan
27 Sep 10 |  Scotland
No Scotland U-turn for Ferguson
27 Sep 10 |  Scotland


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