Maloney spurred on by Georgia loss

Scotland star Shaun Maloney hopes to make amends for the disappointing result against Georgia eight years ago when they meet the Crusaders on Friday.

Maloney was involved in the 2-0 defeat to the Georgians in the Euro 2008 qualifier which he believes was pivotal in ending Scotland’s chances of reaching the major tournament.

However, there’s a renewed sense of optimism in the Scotland camp as they head to Tbilisi and the Hull City forward is determined to make amends and qualify for Euro 2016.

“I started that game in Georgia and it was a really difficult night, a really poor performance from the team.

It was a really bad result for the country. It probably cost us. It meant we needed to beat Italy, who were world champions. It was a big ask.

“We’ve played Georgia since so I wouldn’t say it’s banishing demons, it’s just a huge opportunity.

“It’s about what this group has done in this campaign because not many would have even been involved that night.

“Performances and results like that – which are buried somewhere deep – are part of the motivation to try to actually go that step further.

“We all want to go to big championships. It’s been so long. That’s why it sounds like such a big motivation. There is big hunger to get back there.”

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