Wednesday 1st April 2009
Hampden Park, Glasgow
Scotland 2 - McCormack (39), S. Fletcher (65)
Iceland 1 - I. Sigurdsson (54)
This was a nail-biting match from which Scotland emerged with a crucial three points. However, the match will be remembered for the antics of Barry Ferguson and Allan McGregor - who were both given life bans by the SFA for the 'v' signs (pictured, below) they gave to photographers.
Ross McCormack opened the scoring when he curled a superb right footed shot into the top corner after a tardemark surging run and lay-off by Alan Hutton (Scotland's best player if you ask me).
Lyn Oslo's Indridi Sigurdsson stunned Hampden 9 minutes after half-time when he placed the ball past Craig Gordon after Palmi Palmasson's stunning effort had crashed back off the post. I thought Stephen McManus gave Palmasson too much room to shoot and from what I've heard Gordon looked slightly slow in his efforts to get up for the rebound.
11 minutes later we were back in front when Hibs' Steven Fletcher flicked a close range header past Gunnleifer Gunnleifsson after a McCormack corner was flicked on by McManus.
We managed to hold on for the win despite a late onslaught from Iceland in which Gordon pulled off two oustanding saves - one with what appeared to be made with his face. The saves had the Scotland support singing his praises while at the same time leaving McGregor in no doubt that he wasn't Scotland number 1 on their eyes.
For me Ross McCormack, Alan Hutton and Craig Gordon were Scotland's stand out performers while Eidur Gudjohnsen showed flashes of his class for Iceland. You have to feel sorry for the Barcelona man as he is well above the rest of his team mates when it comes to ability, it must be a frustrating experience every time he pulls on his nation's jersey.
1. Gordon - 8
2. Hutton - 8
3. Naysmith - 6
4. McManus (c) - 7
5. Caldwell - 7
6. Morrison - 7 (16. Rae - 90 mins)
7. D. Fletcher - 7
8. Brown - 7
9. Miller - 5
10. S. Fletcher - 6 (13. Teale - 77 mins)
11. McCormack - 9
Subs Not Used:
Hutton Caldwell McManus Naysmith
Morrison Brown D. Fletcher McCormack
Miller S. Fletcher
Iceland: Gunnleifsson, Danielsson, Kristjan Orn Sigurdsson, Indridi Sigurdsson (Bjornsson 80), Eiriksson, Steinsson, Aron Gunnarsson (Eggert Jonsson 70), Helguson, Palmason, Gudjohnsen, Smarason.
Subs Not Used: Arason, Gudmundsson, Ragnar Sigurdsson, Gunnarson, Bjarnason.
My man of the match: Ross McCormack