Column: Dream of watching Scotland at a World Cup could soon become reality

As millions around the globe prepare to cheer their country on in the World Cup, us Scots once again find ourselves sat outside the party, pressed up against the window looking in.

Scotland supporters haven't watched their team play in a World Cup since 1998. Picture by Andrew Parsons

For younger generations of football fans, it’s all we’ve ever really known and we’ve become accustomed to watching major tournaments at home.

From picking names out of a hat in the office sweepstake to supporting the nations of our favourite players, we will all rightfully still have a vested interest in this summer’s spectacle in Russia.

Sign up to our Opinion newsletter

Sign up to our Opinion newsletter

There will also be those among us keeping a close eye on the results of Belgium, Panama and Tunisia when they take on a certain Auld Enemy from south of the Border in the group stages.

However, as I try to ignore the fact Scotland hasn’t qualified for a World Cup since 1998, I firmly believe we are moving in the right direction towards taking our place at the top table of international football once again.

Don’t get me wrong, we’ll need our fair share of luck in the qualification draws for both the 2020 European Championships and the 2022 World Cup.

But I’m filled with genuine optimism when I look at the talent coming through.

I don’t recall ever feeling so positive about the future of the nation’s football side in the past two decades.

Promising stars such as Scott McTominay of Manchester United, Kieran Tierney of Celtic and Liverpool’s Andy Robertson are more than capable of leading us into a major finals.

Robertson, who is sure to feature in this weekend’s Champions League final, is a perfect example of what can be achieved with belief and hard work.

Let’s dare to dream...