James Mcfadden earned Berti Vogts' new-look Scotland side a welcome win here in Tallinn last night.
James McFadden earned Berti Vogts' new-look Scotland side a welcome win here in Tallinn last night.
With 18 players missing because of injury or conflicting commitments the German, who had steered his adopted nation to four successive defeats, had his excuses ready-made for him. But after a number of chances went begging, McFadden finally ensured in the 76th-minute that the coach did not need them.
An end to Vogts' poor run almost meant a promising beginning for the 20-year-old Darren Fletcher, who became Scotland's youngest captain since 1886. The Manchester United man was all action in an attacking midfield role, spraying passes around when he was not taking on men himself.
There were also debuts for Nigel Quashie, the former England B international who has changed his allegiance on the strength of having a Glaswegian grandfather; his Portsmouth colleague Richard Hughes at left-back; and David McNamee, of Livingston, at right-back.
Estonia hit the post in the 37th minute but Scotland were clearly the stronger side. They missed several chances before an error in the home defence allowed McFadden to fire a cross-shot past Martin Kaalma 14 minutes from time.
Vogts was delighted. "We played in a very professional way, especially in the first half. We created a lot of chances and at half-time I told them, 'Hey, a simple goal will do. I am not looking for goal of the month or goal of the season'."
ESTONIA: Kaalma; Allas, Stepanov, Jaager, Klavan, Rahn, Terehhov (Reinumae, 85), Reim, Viikmae, Oper, Lindpere (Kink, 75).
SCOTLAND: Gallacher; McNamee, Hughes, Caldwell, Mackay, Pressley (Webster, h-t), Fletcher, Holt, Miller (Crawford, 78), McFadden (Kerr, 89), Quashie.
Referee: T Kolbech Poulsen (Den).Reuse content