Christophe Berra urges fans to stop getting on team’s back
CHRISTOPHE Berra wants the nation to stop being pessimistic and start backing the players as Scotland aim to salvage their World Cup qualifying campaign.
The team was booed off the Hampden pitch for the second time in four days on Tuesday evening when a 1-1 draw against Macedonia followed Saturday’s goalless stalemate with Serbia.
The Tartan Army were clearly frustrated and unhappy as the national team opened the campaign with just two points from two home games as they aim to come through a tough group, which also includes Croatia, Belgium and Wales.
Berra believes there is still plenty for the Scots to play for but insists the supporters must get behind the team.
The Wolverhampton Wanderers defender said: “No matter if you play international football or at club level and you’re not winning games, the fans will get on your back, but we need them to be by us.
“We are not getting beat and that’s a positive. It’s not all doom and gloom. I don’t know why people are being like this.
“When we cross that white line, we go out there and try to do our best. As a country, as the UK, in Britain, I think we are quite pessimistic a lot of the time. If things are not going well, we seem to get on our backs.
“That’s not what we need. We need people to back us and push us forward.
“We are trying to do the right things and sometimes it might take a little time. There are still 24 points to play for and there is still a long way to go.”
Scotland trail Serbia, Belgium and Croatia by two points in Group A but Berra refused to entertain suggestions that hopes of reaching Brazil in 2014 are all but over already.
He added: “I think that’s stupid talk, let’s be honest. There is a long, long way to go.
“Scotland, in the past, have gone away and won big games so why can’t we do it again?
“We’ve got the players to do it and we will be looking forward to it.”
Next up for the Scots are trips to Wales – who suffered a 6-1 thrashing at the hands of Serbia on Tuesday – and Belgium in a double-header next month.
Berra believes Craig Levein’s men may prove to be more successful on the road after failing to live up to expectations so far at home.
He said: “We are only two points behind the leaders and it’s all to play for.
“We might be better suited away from home, when teams will come at us and we can sit in and counter-attack them.
“Teams come here and sit in sometimes and maybe we find it hard to break them down.
“We’ve got two massive away games. We’ll go into the away games positive.
“The pressure will be on Wales. They’ve just been beaten 6-1 and that makes our result against Serbia look half-decent. We will be going there in positive mood and looking to get a win.”
Reflecting on the draw with Macedonia, he added: “It was frustrating. We didn’t play to the standards we’ve set.
“The second half was a lot better but Macedonia are no mugs. They’ve got (Goran) Pandev, one of the top players in the world.
“They’ve got clever players and they counter-attacked well.”
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Weather for Edinburgh
Saturday 25 May 2013
Temperature: 6 C to 17 C
Wind Speed: 13 mph
Wind direction: West
Temperature: 9 C to 16 C
Wind Speed: 14 mph
Wind direction: South west