Scotland face a gruelling trip east to Kazakhstan for their European qualifier on Thursday afternoon.

Alex McLeish’s men are hoping a strong start will put them in good stead to qualify for their first tournament in over 20 years.

However, as it’s a tough trip across time zones, the Tartan Army will need any help possible.

Luckily, three of Scotland’s men have played in Kazakhstan before and know how it feels.


Celtic men have mixed fortunes in Kazakhstan

Out of the five Hoops men, two of them have played in Kazakhstan before in European competition.

James Forrest scoring into Shakhter Karagandy. (Photo by Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

James Forrest, Kieran Tierney and Callum McGregor have lasted the high temperatures and brought back a result.

Forrest has played there a few times including the first trip to Shakhter Karagandy where Celtic were battered.

All men have played FC Astana twice, drawing once and losing narrowly before going through on away goals.

The ultimate key to survival for Celtic was to keep it tight and not to over exhaust themselves with lots of running.


Scotland must remember that the Kazakhs are not a powder puff nation when it comes to football.

Kazakhstan will be no push overs on Wednesday. (Photo by Andrew Surma/NurPhoto via Getty Images)

They’ll show the Scots what they’re made of and use every advantage in their arsenal to get a result.

Scotland have Celtic men in key areas

The five Hoops men are spread across the pitch and will more than likely see action this week.

Scott Bain should be a starter for McLeish and Oliver Burke is reinventing himself as a striker.

Kieran Tierney could play on Wednesday as Andy Robertson is out. (Photo by James Williamson – AMA/Getty Images)

Kieran Tierney’s hopes are boosted following Andy Robertson’s dental fiasco back in England.

Furthermore, McGregor is a key man in the Scotland midfield and Forrest is one of the mature lads of the team.

All Celtic fans will be hoping for though is that everyone comes through unscathed during these ties.

The Bhoys have an abundance of big players out ahead of next week’s Rangers fixture and they won’t want more.

Sure, everyone hopes Scotland gets the win, but they’ll be wanting the players back safe even more.

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