Scotland will face England in the Toulon Tournament just two days before the countries’ World Cup showdown at Hampden after they clinched their first semi-final spot for 23 years in France.
Scot Gemmill’s under-20 side deservedly beat Brazil at the weekend, but they found it tough in Vitrolles, without injured star Oliver Burke, when they went a goal down.But two goals, including a penalty, from Rangers striker Ryan Hardie rescued the young Scots and sent them through to their first last four appearance in the prestigious tournament for 23 years after finishing as best runners-up in the three Groups.
They face England in Fos-Sur-Mer tomorrow and Gemmill insisted he was proud of his kids. He said: “I’m really pleased for the players to get over the line and win a game everyone expects us to win.
“Indonesia were really determined to try to embarrass us. Obviously, we made it hard for ourselves conceding the first goal and if we hadn’t have won it would have been a huge disappointment in terms of giving us a chance to qualify. So I’m pleased we’ve got what we deserved.
“I said to the players, sometimes who knows how long it can take. Sometimes it takes till the second half till you get one. I was just really pleased the players played the way we set up to play and how we prepared to play in terms of pressing the opposition.
“Even though most of our players have played first team football they’re still young players learning to play at really high concentrated levels.”
Scotland, without ankle knock victim Burke, dominated from the start.
Celtic’s Aidan Nesbitt and Dundee’s Craig Wighton both missed glorious early opportunities.
But, typically, Scotland had to do it the hard way after Indonesia took a shock lead with their first goal of the tournament when a mistake from Nottingham Forest’s Alex Iacovitti gifted Putra Saghara, who plays for Bojonegoro, possession in the 24th minute and he slotted in a composed finish.
Stung Scotland blew another couple of chances through Hardie and panic began to set in along with the prospect of Indonesia joining the likes of Costa Rica and Iran in the overpopulated Scotland Hall of Shame.
But Hardie made amends for his misses seven minutes before the interval when he curled in a superb finish from the edge of the box.
And Scotland were hugely grateful when captain for the day, Celtic right back Anthony Ralston, was clipped by Irsan Lestaluhu when bombing into the box in the 64th minute and Hardie coolly converted the resulting spot kick to send the Scots through.
After the match, the striker said: “We got off to a bad start by conceding a goal, but we found a way to get the win.
“We are a strong group of boys. We knew that we had more than enough to get ourselves into a position to get the win.
“It was a strong Group we were in and to bounce back after the opening defeat to Czech Republic and get two massive wins against Brazil and Indonesia shows you the courage of this group of players.”