John McGinn reveals his Scotland dream has 'just become a reality' after scoring in win over Israel

It was a night John McGinn will remember.

John McGinn celebrates after scoring to make it 1-1 against Israel (Photo by Sammy Turner / SNS Group)

Having waited nearly 40 caps to play in front of a sell-out Hampden, he says he is delighted that Scotland are now rewarding the fans with results to be proud of.

“That’s my 39th cap and my first ever full house for Scotland," he beamed.

Sign up to our Football newsletter

Sign up to our Football newsletter

“It was like the games I used to come to when I was younger, Ukraine at home on a Saturday at 3 o’clock; the Czech Republic, all those ones where you dream about playing for Scotland.

“Tonight is one of those and it’s just become a reality. I don’t think it’s sunk in yet, but we’re certainly giving the Scottish supporters a team to be proud of again.”

The national stadium rocked and the Hampden roar provided the perfect soundtrack to a performance that ultimately showed character and offers Steve Clarke’s side major breathing space in the chase to finish second in the World Cup qualifying group.

“I’ve just got my breath back! It was some game but not really an enjoyable one to play in,” admitted McGinn, who recognised that Scotland had to dig deep to move up through the gears after twice giving their guests the lead.

“It’s one of those ones where, as soon as you make a mistake, you feel they can put you under the cosh. In fairness to Israel, nobody could have argued if they had got the three points. They are a good side but we’ve worked hard all week on set-pieces and although they still weren’t amazing, a flick from Jack [Hendry] and Scotty [McTominay] was there to finish it. And it was brilliant scenes at the end and what we’ve been waiting for for a few years now.

“It certainly isn't a case of job done. The manager stressed that.”

But, as they celebrated with the fans at the final whistle there was positivity.

“It would have been quite easy for them all to leave, but everyone stayed until the end and they got their just rewards.

“We know that we’ve got two big games coming up and in previous campaigns those are the games that have tripped us up.

“We’ll go back, stay focused and be ready for [Faroe Islands] on Tuesday.”

Get a year of unlimited access to all The Scotsman's sport coverage without the need for a full subscription. Expert analysis of the biggest games, exclusive interviews, live blogs, transfer news and 70 per cent fewer ads on Scotsman.com - all for less than £1 a week. Subscribe to us today

 0 comments

Want to join the conversation? Please or to comment on this article.