Scotland U17 2 - 0 Faroes U17: Kids’ good start in Croatia

Scotland U17 manager Scot Gemmill was impressed by the patience shown by his side agains the Faroes. Picture: Paul Devlin/SNS
Scotland U17 manager Scot Gemmill was impressed by the patience shown by his side agains the Faroes. Picture: Paul Devlin/SNS
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Scotland got off to a winning start at the European Under-17 finals in Croatia thanks to second half goals from substitute Innes Cameron and Celtic teenager Jack Aitchison.

The young Scots were frustrated by a Faroes side who barely passed the halfway line, but had to wait until an hour to make the breakthrough when Cameron netted five minutes after he came on.

Aitchison, the Scotland captain, made sure of the points in the opening game in Lucko, outside Zagreb, with a quickfire second goal, before the Islanders were reduced to ten men late on.

Scotland will face bigger tests in their next two games against Hungary and France, but coach Scot Gemmill was delighted at what he saw from his side.

“I thought it was a really accomplished performance for such a young set of players to have the maturity and discipline, but also the quality, to stick to the gameplan,” Gemmill said. “They had the belief the chances and the goal would come. Lesser players or weaker teams would have panicked and started to divert from the gameplan. They showed they have the confidence to stick with it and get the result.

“We were as detailed as we could be in our preparation and we spoke about what would happen if it was 0-0 at half time or after an hour.

“We addressed it and for the young players to take that on board and execute it in this environment was really impressive.

“I was trying to think about the plans if it remained 0-0 for much longer, working out the risks we might have needed in order to win the game. That’s what you need to do as a coach. You don’t win games by just accepting what’s going on. We were ready to make the substitution and thankfully it paid off.”

Scotland were dominant from the start and a lovely flick from Aitchison set up Sebastian Ross for an early chance, but he was thwarted by the legs of debutant Faroes keeper Bjarti Mork.

Aitchison then produced a fantastic reaction save from Mork after Ross set him up, but it was level at the interval.

Scotland finally made the breakthrough on the hour mark when Rangers right back Jordan Houston’s cross was tapped in by Kilmarnock’s Cameron.

Aitchison gave the scoreline a more accurate reflection of the one-sided nature when he took advantage of the Faroes’ attempts to build from the back. Scotland robbed possession and Aitchison lashed in from close range.

Faroes were reduced to ten men with nine minutes left when Asbjorn Hedinsson was shown his second yellow card for a lunge on Norwich City’s Glenn Middleston.