Scotland’s hopes of having Kieran Tierney fit in time to face England in their crunch Euro 2020 clash on Friday have been boosted after the Arsenal defender returned to training.
Tierney was badly missed as Scotland lost 2-0 to the Czech Republic on Monday in their first match at a major tournament for 23 years.
Scotland boss Steve Clarke described the 24-year-old’s injury as a “little niggle” ahead of the game against the Czechs at Hampden.
He was back on the training ground at Scotland’s base in northeast England on Tuesday.
“He did a little bit of light training and we will just see how he progresses. He’s got a chance,” said Clarke.
Getting Tierney back will be vital if the Scots are to have any chance of upsetting the odds at Wembley.
Without him, Clarke is devoid of top-quality centre-backs for his preferred 3-5-2 system, which was exposed in a desperately disappointing start to their Euro campaign.
However, the former Kilmarnock and West Brom manager was keen to stress that all is not lost in Scotland’s quest to qualify from the group stage for the first time at a major tournament.
“The players are fine, completely relaxed and know what they have to do,” he said.
“We need to get the points required to get out of the group and we still have the chance to do that.
“All the doom and gloom that followed the result — not the performance, the result — should be put to one side. My job is to analyse the performance and unfortunately most people just look at the result.
“They are a group of players that are determined to do well for their country. I think that’s shown over the last number of games. We want to keep learning, we want to keep getting better and that’s what we’ll strive to do.
“Sometimes you have to take a negative result and hopefully we bounce back stronger.”