Burley on verge of the sack as SFA reacts to latest rout

Wales 3 Scotland 0

George Burley, the Scotland manager, was last night on the brink of being dismissed after the Scottish Football Association board announced it will meet this week to review his position.

Burley had come perilously close to losing his job in September when Scotland failed to reach next year's World Cup finals. However, he won a reprieve and was expected to lead the qualifying campaign for the 2012 European Championship. Yet, this defeat and the response of the Scotland supporters who travelled to Cardiff looks to have produced a rapid rethink by the SFA.

It might have been the disarming ease with which Aaron Ramsey so elegantly scored the third goal, or the belligerent chants of the Scotland fans who demanded that Burley quit, but perhaps the most telling judgement on Saturday was delivered by the manager himself. In the aftermath of this, he revealed a truth that might yet come to say everything about his time in charge.

"That's where we are as a country," Burley said. "I can't magically bring other players into the squad. I'm picking the best players and trying to get the best out of them. That's all I can do." He meant it as a statement of defence but it sounded like an admission of surrender.

The supporters certainly made their feelings known, jeering when Burley's face appeared on the stadium's TV screen. "I'm not surprised," Burley said. "When your team plays like that you're going to get stick from the fans. We folded like a pack of cards. Shocking defending, a very poor display. There's no excuse, that performance wasn't good enough."

Burley's record is now three wins in 14 games and an overwhelming weight of opinion has built against him. The game, though, gathered itself around the smooth brilliance of Ramsey's play, the 18-year-old's guile released by a role behind the front two. It was from Ramsey's cross that David Edwards scored the opener with an acrobatic volley, then the Arsenal midfielder's pass provided Joe Ledley with the time and space to centre for Simon Church to add the second.

By this stage, midway through the first half, Scotland were playing with indecision, with Danny Fox misplacing a pass straight to Ramsey, who ran the ball into the penalty area then clipped a shot beyond David Marshall.

"Of course I feel for George," said John Toshack, the Wales manager. "I felt 3-0 was a little bit exaggerated, the Scots were better than that scoreline. George didn't deserve that." However well meaning, Toshack's compassion seemed like further damnation for a manager lost to his fate.

Wales: Hennessey; Ricketts, Morgan, Nyatanga (Gabbidon, 60), Bale, Edwards (Cotterill, 88), Williams, Ramsey (Allen, 57), Ledley (King, 80); Church (Vokes, h-t), Evans (Earnshaw, h-t). Substitutes not used: Brown, Easter, Dorman, Cotterill, Matthews, Blake.

Scotland: Marshall; Hutton, G Caldwell, McManus, Fox (Wallace, 54); Cowie (Riordan, 78), D Fletcher, Dorrans (Robson, 71), Naismith (McCormack, 62); Miller (S Fletcher, 54), McFadden (Kyle, 62). Substitutes not used: Langfield, Bera, S Caldwell, Adam, Gallacher.

Referee: C Zimmermann (Swit).

Booked: Wales Morgan; Scotland Marshall.

Man of the match: Ramsey.

Attendance: 13,844.

News
people

Arts and Entertainment
JJ Abrams' seventh Star Wars, The Force Awakens
filmsThe first glimpse of Episode VII has gone online after weeks of anticipation
News
Michael Buerk in the I'm A Celebrity jungle 2014
people
Arts and Entertainment
Wolf (Nathan McMullen), Ian (Dan Starky), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi), Clara (Jenna Coleman), Santa Claus (Nick Frost) in the Doctor Who Christmas Special (BBC/Photographer: David Venni)
art

Presents unwrapped, turkey gobbled... it's time to relax

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: ‘We give them hope. They come to us when no one else can help’

Christmas Appeal

Meet the charity giving homeless veterans hope – and who they turn to when no one else can help
Should doctors and patients learn to plan humane, happier endings rather than trying to prolong life?

Is it always right to try to prolong life?

Most of us would prefer to die in our own beds, with our families beside us. But, as a GP, Margaret McCartney sees too many end their days in a medicalised battle
Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night - is that what it takes for women to get to the top?

What does it take for women to get to the top?

Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night and told women they had to do more if they wanted to get on
Christmas jumper craze: Inside the UK factory behind this year's multicultural must-have

Knitting pretty: British Christmas Jumpers

Simmy Richman visits Jack Masters, the company behind this year's multicultural must-have
French chefs have launched a campaign to end violence in kitchens - should British restaurants follow suit?

French chefs campaign against bullying

A group of top chefs signed a manifesto against violence in kitchens following the sacking of a chef at a Paris restaurant for scalding his kitchen assistant with a white-hot spoon
Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour War and Peace on New Year's Day as Controller warns of cuts

Just what you need on a New Year hangover...

Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour adaptation of War and Peace on first day of 2015
Cuba set to stage its first US musical in 50 years

Cuba to stage first US musical in 50 years

Claire Allfree finds out if the new production of Rent will hit the right note in Havana
Christmas 2014: 10 best educational toys

Learn and play: 10 best educational toys

Of course you want them to have fun, but even better if they can learn at the same time
Paul Scholes column: I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season

Paul Scholes column

I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
Lewis Moody column: Stuart Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

Lewis Moody: Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

So what must the red-rose do differently? They have to take the points on offer 
Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game