Soccer

Scotland up for England clash

2013-08-13 17:00
Gordon Strachan (Getty Images)
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Bafana train for Eagles

2013-08-13 15:04

See pics of the Bafana team preparing for their international friendly against Nigeria.

London - Scotland are under pressure but ready to perform in this week's friendly against England, manager Gordon Strachan said on Tuesday, as the two sides face each other for the first time in 14 years.

"There's pressure there, trust me," Strachan told a news conference before Wednesday's game at Wembley stadium in London.

"If there wasn't pressure it would be one of those run of the mill friendlies that you play.

"They never turned me on as a player or a manager. This is different. It's a fixture we all want to see more often: players, fans, media, even people who aren't really football fans."

England versus Scotland is the oldest international fixture in the world and used to be an annual event until 1989.

Wednesday's match is the first since England edged a European Championship play-off in 1999 and some 20 000 Scottish fans are expected to descend on London.

Strachan said his side -- currently 50th in the FIFA rankings, 36 places below England -- were "feeling good" and motivated for the tie, particularly after their 1-0 World Cup qualifying win against Croatia in June.

"They (England) have got a magnificent squad but we're really feeling good... What we've got, what we've seen, we're more than happy with the squad we've got," he added.

Strachan said he had cancelled a planned training session at Wembley on Tuesday and had yet to decide on his starting XI.

He picked a 29-man squad for the game, including Celtic trio Scott Brown, Charlie Mulgrew and James Forrest, as well as Vancouver Whitecaps' Kenny Miller, late last month.

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