McLeish marvels at stylish Scotland's promotion success

Scotland made it seven goals in two competitive matches as it claimed Nations League promotion and praise from manager Alex McLeish.

Scotland manager Alex McLeish.   -  Getty Images

Alex McLeish hailed the "amazing" football Scotland played in beating Israel 3-2 to secure Nations League promotion on Tuesday. 

James Forrest's sparkling hat-trick erased Beram Kayal's early opener and set the host on its way to top spot in Group 1 of League C. 

It was made to survive an anxious final 15 minutes following Eran Zahavi's goal against the run of play, but held on to book a place in the competition's second tier, as well as the safety net of a play-off spot in Euro 2020 qualifying.

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With his side having eased to a 4-0 defeat of Albania on Saturday, McLeish was able to celebrate consecutive victories as Scotland manager for the first time since October 2007, albeit not without enduring a few late nerves.

"I tried not to look at the clock in the last 10 minutes or so when [Israel] got their second goal," the former Rangers boss admitted to Sky Sports.

"But, we played some great football for an hour. I've got to be absolutely proud of the guys for the way they played tonight [and] the way they played against Albania."

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"They set this game up because of that performance. It gave them an injection of confidence. It was amazing football and there was a lot of good build-up play in the game as well."

Celtic winger Forrest carried on the scoring form that resulted in a brace against Albania last time out. The 27-year-old had failed to register a goal in his previous 24 Scotland appearances, but was delighted to make crucial contributions in two key fixtures.

"It's a great night. I think it showed character that we kept going and managed to get the goals. The position I play, that's part of my job. You need to contributing goals and assists. I'm delighted to do that in the last couple of games," Forrest said.

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