'No control over situation' – Scotland boss prepares for Israel qualifier


Scotland head coach Pedro Martinez Losa says he must lead the team against Israel – regardless of how comfortable he is with the situation – after naming his squad for their upcoming Women’s European Championship qualifiers.

Police Scotland are putting “appropriate” plans in place to “maintain public safety” ahead of this month’s match at Hampden Park.

Ticket restrictions are in place for the fixture on May 31, with only Scotland Supporters’ Club members or fans who have attended Scotland’s last four women’s matches eligible to buy tickets.

The return fixture has been moved to the BSC Stadium in Budapest, Hungary on June 4, amid the ongoing war in the Middle East.

“As a head coach, I am not in control of these circumstances,” he said. “Focus remains on qualifying for the Euros and giving the best to the team and protecting the players to ensure we can perform to the best level.

“UEFA has put us in a position where we have to play these games, with Israel in this group. We cannot control anything else.

“When we meet in every camp we analyse the challenge we are going to face. On this occasion we will discuss with the leadership group what is necessary to be done to make sure we are in the best scenario to compete home and away.

“Whether I’m comfortable or not from my personal view, the job has to be done for Scotland and I remain focused on the role.”

Sky Sports News have contacted UEFA for comment.

Martha Thomas (left) and Kirsty Hanson are back for Scotland
Image:
Martha Thomas (left) and Kirsty Hanson are back for Scotland

Martinez Losa’s side secured their first win in eight competitive matches last time out – beating Slovakia 1-0 – and are level on points with group leaders Serbia, who Scotland drew with in their opening qualifier.

Israel are bottom of Group F having lost both games against Serbia and Slovakia.

Forwards Martha Thomas of Tottenham and Kirsty Hanson of Aston Villa return for the double-header after missing the start of the qualifying campaign, as does Rangers’ Kirsty Howat.

Manchester City’s Sandy MacIver, AC Milan’s Christy Grimshaw and Fiona Brown of Glasgow City all miss out with ACL injuries.

Brown’s club team mates Hayley Lauder and Lauren Davidson are also out, having missed City’s last two games, while there is no place in the 23-strong squad for Hibernian’s Leah Eddie who has just returned from injury and Celtic’s Amy Gallacher too.

Squad in full

Goalkeepers: Eartha Cumings (FC Rosengard), Jenna Fife (Rangers), Lee Gibson (Glasgow City)

Defenders: Jenna Clark (Liverpool), Kelly Clark (Celtic), Rachel Corsie (Aston Villa), Nicola Docherty (Rangers), Sophie Howard (Leicester City), Rachel McLauchlan (Rangers), Kirsty Smith (West Ham)

Midfielders: Chelsea Cornet (Rangers), Erin Cuthbert (Chelsea), Lisa Evans (Bristol City), Sam Kerr (FC Bayern), Jamie-Lee Napier (Bristol City), Amy Rodgers (Bristol City)

Forwards: Claire Emslie (Angel City), Sarah Ewens (Rangers), Kirsty Hanson (Aston Villa), Brogan Hay (Rangers), Kirsty Howat (Rangers), Jane Ross (Rangers), Martha Thomas (Tottenham)

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