That was incredible - but I'm glad it's over, admits new Scotland manager Gordon Strachan

Scotland 1 Estonia 0

Gordon Strachan revealed his Scotland managerial debut had sparked feelings he had never experienced in his career after leading his country to a narrow friendly win over Estonia.

Strachan was "blown away" by nerves and excitement in the run-up to the game, which Scotland won thanks to Charlie Mulgrew's 39th-minute goal.

The 55-year-old was back at Pittodrie, where he helped Aberdeen to many memorable victories as a player including a famous comeback against Bayern Munich that helped the Dons on their way to the 1983 European Cup Winners' Cup.

As a manager, Strachan has experienced cup finals on both sides of the border but he admitted nothing could have prepared him for managing his country.

The former Southampton and Celtic manager said: "I'm glad it's all over because in 40 years of football that is probably the most excited and nervous I have been before a game in my life.

"I didn't know how I would feel when I first took charge of the team. Now I know. It was an incredible experience.

"I don't think I expected that. I thought I had done nearly everything in the game, played everywhere, and it kind of blew me away really. I've been in the Champions League, I have had to beat Milan, Barcelona, Man United, and it wasn't like that."

The former Manchester United and Leeds midfielder admitted he had trouble sleeping the night before the game: "I think it's when you're on your own at times, when you wake up in the morning and you go 'bang, here we go'. It's okay when you get here. I don't know what it was."

Strachan employed a 4-2-3-1 formation in the first half with Steven Naismith, Shaun Maloney and Chris Burke, making his first Scotland appearance since 2006, tasked with providing the service to lone striker Steven Fletcher.

Scotland led at half-time after Mulgrew swept home Charlie Adam's free-kick following a training-ground move and Strachan moved to a 4-4-2 after the break when Jordan Rhodes came on.

Strachan, whose competitive career begins with a World Cup double header against Wales and Serbia next month, added: "I liked some individual performances, the two midfield players that went on in the second half [James McArthur and James Morrison] were terrific. Burke, terrific. [Robert] Snodgrass had a hard act to follow, he comes on and does well. That's what I wanted, people to take people on. We got that.

"The two centre-halves [Andy Webster and Christophe Berra] had to put up with a lot coming at them, nothing too dangerous, but they dealt with it nice and tidy.

"There are combinations that I thought 'that's good', combinations that we need to work on, and combinations that I thought 'nah, that's not so great'. It was good your first game is a friendly and you can have a look at a couple of things."

Scotland (4-4-2) McGregor; Hutton, Webster, Berra, Mulgrew; Maloney (Rhodes, 44), Brown (Morrison, 61), Adam (McArthur, 61), Burke (Snodgrass, 44); Naismith (Commons, 75), Fletcher (Fletcher, 67).

Estonia (4-4-2): Pareiko; Jaager, Morozov, Klavan, Teniste; Puri (Purje, 58), Moshnikov, Vassiljev, Oper (Ahjupera, 44); Kink (Luts, 58), Ojamaa (Kams, 72).

Referee:C Turpin (France).

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

On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back
Thurston Moore interview

Thurston Moore interview

On living in London, Sonic Youth and musical memoirs
In full bloom

In full bloom

Floral print womenswear
From leading man to Elephant Man, Bradley Cooper is terrific

From leading man to Elephant Man

Bradley Cooper is terrific
In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

In this the person to restore our trust in the banks?

Dame Colette Bowe - interview
When do the creative juices dry up?

When do the creative juices dry up?

David Lodge thinks he knows
The 'Cher moment' happening across fashion just now

Fashion's Cher moment

Ageing beauty will always be more classy than all that booty
Thousands of teenage girls enduring debilitating illnesses after routine school cancer vaccination

Health fears over school cancer jab

Shock new Freedom of Information figures show how thousands of girls have suffered serious symptoms after routine HPV injection
Fifa President Sepp Blatter warns his opponents: 'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

'I forgive everyone, but I don't forget'

Fifa president Sepp Blatter issues defiant warning to opponents
Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report

Weather warning

Extreme summer temperatures will soon cause deaths of up to 1,700 more Britons a year, says government report
LSD: Speaking to volunteer users of the drug as trials get underway to see if it cures depression and addiction

High hopes for LSD

Meet the volunteer users helping to see if it cures depression and addiction
German soldier who died fighting for UK in Battle of Waterloo should be removed from museum display and given dignified funeral, say historians

Saving Private Brandt

A Belgian museum's display of the skeleton of a soldier killed at Waterloo prompts calls for him to be given a dignified funeral