Five things we learned from Scotland’s draw with Canada

Tom Cairney, left, pictured alongside Ikechi Anya, impressed on his Scotland debut. Picture: Ian MacNicol/Getty Images
Tom Cairney, left, pictured alongside Ikechi Anya, impressed on his Scotland debut. Picture: Ian MacNicol/Getty Images
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It was cold, wet and miserable and fewer than 10,000 turned up. So just what did we learn from the game at Easter Road?

1. £22 is too expensive for a friendly

The official attendance of 9,158 looked generous at best. A big crowd was never likely, especially on the back of successive 3-0 defeats in World Cup qualifying, and the players’ fragile confidence was hardly going to be lifted by running out to thousands of empty seats. The entry prices hardly helped matters.

2 Strachan has a new central defence in mind

With Grant Hanley out injured, Strachan gave Christophe Berra and Charlie Mulgrew some game time together, presumably with the aim of getting them used to each other before Sunday’s visit of Slovenia. The back four were all over the place for Fraser Aird’s opener but the pairing showed some promise. Mulgrew was composed on the ball and Berra strong in the tackle. They will face a far stiffer test on Sunday though.

3. It looks like Kieran Tierney and Andrew Robertson vying for the left-back slot

Lee Wallace was one of Scotland’s better performers at Wembley last time out with the main two left-backs both injured, but he struggled to deal with former Rangers team-mate Aird. Despite Wallace impressing going forward, Robertson looked a better bet in the second half. Tierney will also be pushing for a start on Sunday following his good form for Celtic.

4. Centre-forward remains a problem

Chris Martin was poor after being handed the chance to sharpen up having started just two of Fulham’s last nine games. Leigh Griffiths has not started a game in 2017 and Jordan Rhodes fluffed a chance after coming off the bench. The latter is currently keeping Steven Fletcher out the Sheffield Wednesday team. Steven Naismith worked his socks off and scored but usually plays a deeper role.

5. Tom Cairney is one to keep an eye on

The 26-year-old Fulham skipper put on an assured display on his Scotland debut. He showed why he is one the Sky Bet Championship’s most in-form midfielders with a couple of incisive passes and had a hand in Naismith’s equaliser. It is unlikely he will be thrown straight into Sunday’s crucial World Cup qualifier but he could certainly play a part later down the line.