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O Flower of Scotland

Started on 6 November 2019 by Imagine / First Post
Latest Reply on 21 November 2019 by Imagine / Last Post
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O Flower of Scotland,
When will we see
Your like again,
That fought and died for,
Your wee bit Hill and Glen,
And stood against him,
Proud Edward's Army,
And sent him homeward,
To think again.

The Hills are bare now,
And Autumn leaves
lie thick and still,
O'er land that is lost now,
Which those so dearly held,
That stood against him,
Proud Edward's Army,
And sent him homeward,
To think again.

Those days are past now,
And in the past
they must remain,
But we can still rise now,
And be the nation again,
That stood against him,
Proud Edward's Army,
And sent him homeward,
To think again.

The Hills are bare now,
And Autumn leaves
lie thick and still,
O'er land that is lost now,
Which those so dearly held,
That stood against him,
Proud Edward's Army,
And sent him homeward,
To think again.

O Flower of Scotland,
When will we see
your like again,
That fought and died for,
Your wee bit Hill and Glen,
And stood against him,
Proud Edward's Army,
And sent him homeward,
To think again.
Looking forward to seeing where you go with this
Imagine's avatar Group Imagine
1 monthEdited

For many a year now the Scottish National Team have been subject to ridicule due to their inability to qualify for a major tournament. The last one was France 1998 which is over twenty years ago now. Meaning a full generation have grown up into adulthood not knowing the sheer joy of following your country to a major tournament and enjoying the camaraderie and joy which surrounds such a major event. There have been a couple of hard luck tales over the years but I wouldn't like to make excuses for us by citing bad luck as a reason for failure. Simply put, we have been a nation without a plan for too long. We have been a nation without passion for too long. We have been a nation scared to attack and conquer an opponent for too long. We have persisted with has been, out of form players and overlooked our passionate and hungry youngsters for too long. It is time for change.

The likes of Walter Smith, Gordon Strachan, George Burley, Craig Levein and Alex McLeish(on two occasions) have failed over the past twelve years to get us over the line. Walter Smith, Gordon Strachan and Alex McLeish each had close encounters with qualification but as always we stumbled over the final hurdle. With McLeish the latest to vacate the post as National Team manager speculation is rife that Steve Clarke may get the nod due to his work with Kilmarnock. Is Clarke really going to bring anything different to the table than the aforementioned previous managers? The sceptics are doubtful and there is some hope among the fans that someone new and fresh could come in and rejuvenate a stagnant nation.

Glad to see you back for FM20. Scotland are in need of something new after far too many years of failure. They have become the laughing stock of the home nations, so it's time for change on their part. Good luck!

SCOTLAND OVERLOOK MANAGERIAL EXPERIENCE FOR ROOKIE


Contrary to speculation Scotland have opted against appointing Steve Clarke as the new manager of the National Team. The reasons aren't entirely clear although it has been suggested that the SFA aren't convinced Clarke has the conviction to bring about the changes that they feel are necessary. The man that has been chosen is Christopher Burns who has just retired from the game at thirty-two years old. Burns has been a great servant to Motherwell throughout his entire career and decided to end his career having played exactly 500 games for the club in all competitions. It's a well known fact that Burns has OCD and this contributed to his decision to retire from playing having reached what he described as 'a wholesome milestone'.

The question you may be asking the SFA is why Christopher Burns? Well, Burns has been gaining his coaching badges with the SFA for several years now and at the age of thirty-two he holds a Continental Pro Licence which is a fantastic achievement given his relatively young age. Coincidentally Christopher Burns was tipped to be the next big Scottish manager in the game by former Motherwell team-mate James McFadden, who Burns has inherited as a coach, a couple of years ago. McFadden stated at the time that Burns had the kind of attributes to his bow that made him wish he could've worked under him during his own playing career. In a weird twist of fate McFadden now has the opportunity to work with Burns with the National Team, should he keep his former team-mate on that is. Of course Burns hasn't been handed this job purely on the praise of others. Throughout his time gaining his badges with the FA he was a standout leader and motivator among his peers. His impeccable attention to detail, planning and organising sessions and implementing his ideas upon the youngsters under his watch didn't go unnoticed. The SFA believe that Christopher Burns has the gumption to bring about change in a big way. We will see if that is the case and the man himself is scheduled for a press conference imminently.
An intriguing appointment. Could this relatively shocking move pay off for Scotland after years of appointing experienced heads?

Christopher Burns Press Conference


John Wilson(Press Officer):
Good afternoon folks! I'd like to introduce your new Scotland National Team manager Christopher Burns.

Christopher Burns:
Thank you John and thank you everyone for being here it is a pleasure and an immensely proud moment for me.

Stephen Hughes(SSN):
Hi Christopher congratulations on the job. Do you agree with those who have suggested this job comes with huge pressure and more so for an inexperienced manager such as yourself?

CB:
Thank you Stephen. There is a lot of pressure and scrutiny on this position and quite rightly so, you have the weight of an expectant nation on your shoulders. However, I believe I have the character to thrive under such pressure and I aim to deliver more than anyone has done before me.

Barry Christie(BBC):
That is a bold statement Christopher, particularly as you've taken over during the midway point of the Euro qualifiers, do you believe you can qualify from this group?

CB:
I think that this campaign will be a chance for our fringe and youth players to stake a claim for an international future. If they can succeed in doing that then I believe that we can succeed in this group. However, my main aim is to get a solid squad together that is capable of competing at this level for many tournaments to come.

Jason Brady(442):
Are you indicating that some of the experienced players in the squad will be dropped in favour of youth Christopher?

CB:
I can tell you now, our youth are our future and I will be integrating our future into the squad as soon as I feel that it is their time.

Barry Christie(BBC):
What kind of approach will you be using, will you be a defensive minded coach like your predecessors or should we expect something different?

CB:
I will not be a defensive minded coach I can quarantee that. We will look to attack most of the time, there will be games and opponents where it will be wise to switch it up but we will be an attacking nation predominantly.

Bill Leckie(The Sun):
With Cyprus and Russia up first do you think you have the capability in the squad to beat any of them?

CB:
I am confident we can get a couple of good results in those games although it wouldn't be a travesty if we didn't. As we're midway through this campaign, as much as I want to progress I am more concerned about building up a culture of passion and togetherness within the squad. Something I feel will stand us in good stead in the next five years or so.

Davie Provan(Daily Record):
Chris, do you think that the Tartan Army will be happy to hear that you're content with writing this campaign off?

CB:
I think the Tartan Army will be happy to see a Scotland squad without call offs every international break, to see a happy camp full of passion and togetherness, to see a fresh squad brimming with potential and ability and to see us ultimately become a successful nation in the years to come and that is what I will bring to the table.

John Wilson(Press Officer):
Thank you for your time folks that will be all for today.


Strong words from Burns. Giving youth an opportunity could be the way to go as he seeks to aid Scotland's hopes of qualifying for a major tournament after many years of hurt.
Great to see you back mate! Looking forward to what you have in store for us this time around with Scotland. It is good to see Chris isn't going to be sitting back and wants to bring in the youth. Good Luck!
Cheers Griffo, ScottT & TheLFCFan. You've hit the nail on the head there's been too many years of failure and we are a laughing stock. It must end and for it to end we need a new approach!

PS. Bought and moved into my first house this week so been too stressed and busy for FM but hopefully I will now have more time for it since I have plenty time for myself now!
1

With new manager Christopher Burns promising to make sweeping changes to the National Team he immediately set about doing so. His first port of call was to overhaul the backroom staff and old head Billy Stark was first out the door as he was relieved of his U-19 managerial role. Assistant's Alex Dyer and Peter Grant followed suit and were swiftly replaced by Hibernian's Robbie Stockdale. Scotland legend James McFadden was also let go despite being a fan of Burns' managerial potential it seems the feeling wasn't mutual. The final departure was U-19 Goalkeeping coach Tony Craig. What followed was a whirlwind of appointments to the Scotland set up as Burns brought in around forty members of staff across all age groups. Additions like Danny McGrain, Tom Culshaw, Greig Robertson and Michael Beale, from Rangers and Celtic, got tongues wagging as they are a different standard to what we have seen in the coaching set up in recent years. The scouting department was boosted by former Old Firm duo John Brown, and Tosh McKinlay as well as Craig Strachan, son of Gordon, and Stuart Ogilvie. The physio and fitness departments also saw a size able boost in numbers as there are now seven members of staff compared to the previous two beforehand.

The youth set up was also given a huge boost as the likes of Billy Thomson and Paul Sheerin were joined by several others and will link up with Scot Gemmill and Peter Houston, whom Burns opted to keep the faith in. Graeme Murty was recruited from Rangers to lead the U-19's along with Darren Jackson. They will be assisted by the likes of Jamie Ramsden, Duncan Shearer and Shelly Kerr. Kerr recently lead the Women's National Team to their first World Cup however, she has also dreamed of getting her chance in the men's game and his justifiably been given that opportunity. With the set up now looking particularly impressive it remains to be seen if there will be as many changes on the playing side of things when Christopher Burns picks his first squad to face Cyprus and Russia on August 29th.


Christopher Burns has made his first squad selection as National team manager and, as promised, he has made a raft of changes. Starting with the goalkeepers; veterans Allan McGreggor, Craig Gordon and David Marshall have all been dropped for uncapped duo Zander Clark and Craig MacGillivray while Jon McLaughlin, who has has one cap, completes the set. In defence veterans Christophe Berra, Charlie Mulgrew and Grant Hanley make way for the uncapped duo of Mikey Devlin and Declan Gallagher as well as Liam Cooper, Mikey Devlin and John Souttar who have a combined ten caps between them. Kieran Tierney misses out through injury and is replaced by Joe Bryan who has declared himself for the country after being persuaded by Burns. Andrew Robertson, Callum Paterson and Stephen O'Donnell complete the fullback positions. Ryan Jack, Matt Phillips and Callum McGreggor miss out through injury whilst Stuart Armstrong, Barry Bannan, Kenny McLean, Darren Fletcher, Graeme Shinnie, Ryan Christie and Oliver Burke have all been dropped. Matt Ritchie, Robert Snodgrass, James Forrest, Ryan Fraser, Scott McTominay and John McGinn are joined by the uncapped John Fleck and Tom Cairney, who has reaffirmed his commitment to the Scotland team, to complete the midfield. Leigh Griffiths will likely lead the line although Johnny Russell may put up a fight for the role and shock call up Lawrence Shankland may also feature as he looks to earn his first cap. Oli McBurnie's poor start to the season as well as his lack of goals in his seven caps has also led to him being dropped.

Unlike Bryan and Cairney, Burns was unable to persuade Angus Gunn, Harvey Barnes, Karlan Grant, Che Adams or Ryan Fredericks to commit to Scotland. They seemingly have ambitions to play for England but Burns remains hopeful of persuading them to commit to Scotland in the future. All in all it is a pretty inexperienced team and the likes of Robertson, Snodgrass, Ritchie, Forrest, McGinn and Griffiths will have to step up and lead the way for the younger lads. Robertson has kept the captaincy and his understudy for the fullback position; Tierney will also fill in for the captaincy role as he has been selected as the vice captain. In the absence of either of them it is believed the likes of McKenna, Cooper, Callum McGreggor, John Souttar, Matt Ritchie and Callum Paterson will be trusted to debutize.

An interesting squad and a real shake-up all round under new management. A refreshing approach has been taken. Now the results have to come on the pitch. The commitments of Joe Bryan and Tom Cairney is huge.


Scotland were itching to set the record straight against Cyprus and lined up with an attacking side with the hope of doing so. With Griffiths, Forrest, Christie and Cairney spearheading the attack there was optimism that the Celtic lads would link up really well due to their familiarity with each others game. Christie was a late inclusion to the team after Ryan Fraser pulled out through injury and he's slotted straight into the starting squad. There wasn't long to wait for the first goal of the game as Scott McTominay headed in his first international goal from a Ryan Christie corner. Jason Demetriou fould Leigh Griffiths in the box to award the home side a penalty however the Celtic man missed. The same outcome occured just before half time when Dimitris Christofi pulled Robertson down in the box and Griffiths stepped up and had his penalty saved by Konstantinos Panagi once again. Matt Ritchie and Lawrence Shankland were introduced around the hour mark and they replaced the ineffective James Forrest and Leigh Griffiths. Ten minutes later Scotland finally doubled their lead after Robertson's cross was headed away by the Cyprus defence but the ball only went as far as Callum Paterson who let fly from outside the box to score his first international goal. It was penalty giveaway number three fifteen minutes later and substitute Ritchie done what Griffiths couldn't and sealed the win with a composed finish. Christie's late call up worked out fantastically as the winger picked up the man of the match award. Craig MacGilivray and Lawrence Shankland earned their first caps in this match too.


There was a host of changes to the line up against Russia as a few players were tired after their last outing. This meant that Stephen O'Donnell replaced Callum Paterson, Liam Cooper replaced Scott McKenna, John Fleck replaced John McGinn, Robert Snodgrass replaced James Forrest, Matt Ritchie replaced Tom Cairney and Lawrence Shankland replaced Leigh Griffiths. Denis Cheryshev broke the deadlock in this game as Russia scored against the run of play. That lead lasted just ten minutes though as Matt Ritchie scored from the edge of the box after Andy Robertson's cut back. He doubled the lead just minutes later when Snodgrass' free kick led to a bit of a scramble in the box and Ritchie somehow managed to get the ball over the line. John Fleck scored a wonderful goal to mark his debut as he dribbled by several players and shot from outside the box to make it 3-0 to Scotland. Artem Dyzuba headed in from a Yuri Zhirkov cross minutes later and then Ritchie got the third goal in fifteen minutes and his third of the game after Snodgrass cut the ball back across goal and he struck the ball past Andrey Lunev with venom. Mikey Devlin, Declan Gallagher and Joe Bryan made their way from the bench to make their debuts and replaced Cooper, Souttar and Robertson. Lunev compounded a miserable day for the Russians when he let Snodgrass' shot slip out of his hands and into the goal. Cheryshev got a late consolation with his 92nd minute goal coming just a little late for any kind of fight back. Matt Ritchie had an outstanding game and earned the man of the match award after scoring three goals and assisting one too. A magnificent win that and with four victories on the trot Scotland sit in 2nd place in Group I however there isn't too much in it between the surrounding teams.



Cheers ScottT, that was the aim and these past two results prove it could work. Aye Bryan is a good back up to Robertson and Tierney as he's definitely the third best left back I could choose from. I really like Cairney and have done for many an FM now so I'm glad he's committed, he's actually played twice but I guess they were in friendlies and he wanted to be considered for England after that. It'll be a battle between him and Ritchie for that spot.
1
Look at Cyprus go... wow, sorry mate I am hoping they pip you in the end haha

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