Aberdeen star Lewis Ferguson says Scotland Under 21s can emulate senior side and make their own piece of history

Scotland Under-21s midfielder Lewis Ferguson will take huge inspiration from Steve Clarke's squad's European qualification when he and his team-mates bid to make it a double.

Lewis Ferguson during Scotland's UEFA Under-21 European Championship match against Croatia at Tynecastle Park on November 12. (Photo by Craig Foy / SNS Group)

Scotland will reach the UEFA European Under-21 Championship finals for the first time since 1996 if they beat Greece in Athens on Tuesday.

Scot Gemmill's squad shared a nation's joy as they watched their senior counterparts reach the Euro 2020 finals with a penalty shootout victory over Serbia last Thursday, David Marshall saving the decisive kick from Aleksandar Mitrovic.

Sign up to our Football newsletter

Sign up to our Football newsletter

Now they aim to bring more pride to the country by topping their qualification group.

"We take so much inspiration and confidence from that," Ferguson said.

"We all watched the A squad on Thursday night and everybody enjoyed celebrating it.

"I think we were just like every other household that was watching the game because we are fans as well. So I think we just reacted the same as everybody in Scotland did that night and celebrated that penalty save.

"It was massive for the nation as a whole. It was so good to see everybody celebrating after such a hard year.

"We looked at that and thought 'why can we not go and do that at this level?' Hopefully we can go and do that and make the nation proud again."

Scotland kept their fate in their own hands by coming from two goals down to draw with Croatia at Tynecastle last Thursday.

The Euro 2020 feat has also given many of Gemmill's squad further hope that they could be involved in next summer's games at Hampden and Wembley.

Ryan Porteous and twins Robby and Ross McCrorie have been in Clarke's squad while Ferguson is among a number of players who are tipped to make the step up at some stage.

"It's inspiration for us to go and qualify but it's inspiration to go and push at club level for the next eight months," the Aberdeen player said.

"And you never know what can happen in football.

"We are all fully focused on our game but I'm sure everybody in this squad will have that in the back of our mind that there could be a possibility of going to the Euros next year, which is unbelievable to be honest."

Victory will seal top spot ahead of the Czech Republic courtesy of head-to-head records, but a draw would see them overtaken into second place if Croatia beat Lithuania at home.

But Ferguson gave an insight into the relaxed atmosphere ahead of such a big game.

The 21-year-old said: "It's been 20-odd years since the under-21s last qualified so everyone knows what's at stake, everyone knows how big a game it is, but the lads are relaxed.

"We are looking forward to it. We will go to the pitch today and train on it and see the surroundings but everyone is relaxed and we are confident we can go and do a job.

"The staff have done their homework. All of us are experienced, all of us play week in, week out.

"Everybody is up on the roof just now lying about enjoying a bit of sun and we are just chatting away. There's no nerves, everyone is just looking forward to it."

A message from the Editor:

Thank you for reading this article. We're more reliant on your support than ever as the shift in consumer habits brought about by Coronavirus impacts our advertisers. If you haven't already, please consider supporting our trusted, fact-checked journalism by taking out a digital subscription.