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Steven Fletcher, Scotland striker:


I feel my game's about more than goals but you know as a striker that people don't judge you on how many times you link up play, but on how many you score. So I was conscious of the fact it had been so long [six years since last international strike]. That said, my confidence genuinely hasn't been dented. You just enjoy these days when they come along, and they don't come much better than scoring a hat-trick for your country.

I only realised after the match that I'm the first Scottish player [to score an international hat-trick] in so long [since 1969 when Colin Stein scored four in a FIFA World Cup qualifier against Cyprus]. That was a shock. I wondered if Shaun [Maloney, who scored twice in the first half against Gibraltar] might get there first, but a few of the lads came up after my second and said: 'Go on, make sure you get the match ball.'

"It meant a lot that he [Scotland manager Gordon Strachan] stuck with me, but that's the way he is. The gaffer's made a point of standing by the guys who've got us to this position and saying that, whatever anyone else says, he knows we're good players. I'm delighted to have repaid a bit of that faith.

30/03/201511:11Frank Burns, Glasgow

Steven Fletcher said his first goal against Gibraltar "seemed to take an age to go in" as he became Scotland's first international hat-trick scorer since 1969.Lining up at Hampden, the Sunderland AFC forward was certainly all too aware that six years had passed since his one and only national-team goal. Fast forward 90 minutes, though, and the 28-year-old was looking at statistics and scrutiny that could not have contrasted more starkly. Not only had the drought ended in a 6-1 Group D win; the former Hibernian FC forward had made history, becoming the first Scot in almost half a century to score an international hat-trick. Fletcher could not suppress a smile as he clutched both the game ball and a well-earned man of match award.

©AFP/Getty Images
30/03/201511:07Frank Burns, Glasgow

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Photos

  • Charlie Mulgrew (Scotland)
    Charlie Mulgrew (Scotland)
  • Martin O'Neill (Republic of Ireland) & Gordon Strachan (Scotland)
    Martin O'Neill (Republic of Ireland) & Gordon Strachan (Scotland)
  • Shaun Maloney & Scott Brown (Scotland)
    Shaun Maloney & Scott Brown (Scotland)
  • Charlie Mulgrew & Andrew Robertson (Scotland)
    Charlie Mulgrew & Andrew Robertson (Scotland)
  • Steven Naismith (Scotland)
    Steven Naismith (Scotland)
  • Charlie Mulgrew & Shaun Maloney (Scotland)
    Charlie Mulgrew & Shaun Maloney (Scotland)
  • Shaun Maloney (Scotland)
    Shaun Maloney (Scotland)
  • Shaun Maloney (Scotland)
    Shaun Maloney (Scotland)
  • Andrew Robertson (Scotland)
    Andrew Robertson (Scotland)
  • Grant Hanley (Scotland) & James McClean (Republic of Ireland)
    Grant Hanley (Scotland) & James McClean (Republic of Ireland)
1 of 10

Squad

Coach:

Gordon Strachan (SCO)

Legend:
Player list B
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  • SuspendedSuspended
  • InjuredInjured
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Data based on current competition
Last updated: 24/04/2015 09:38 CET

Highlights

  • Highlights: Scotland 6-1 Gibraltar

    Watch Gibraltar find the net for the first time in competitive international football but goals from Shaun Maloney, Steven Naismith and a hat-trick from Steven Fletcher condemn them to a 6-1 defeat against Scotland.
  • Highlights: Scotland v Ireland

    See Shaun Maloney’s brilliant winning goal as Scotland drew level on points with Ireland in Group D.
  • Highlights: Poland v Scotland

    See the goals from Warsaw as the sides battled out a 2-2 draw in Group D.
  • Highlights: Scotland v Georgia

    Watch the unfortunate own-goal by Akaki Khubutia that proved decisive in a 1-0 win for Scotland.
  • Highlights: Germany 2-1 Scotland

    Watch the goals from Dortmund where Germany overcame plucky resistance from Scotland to get their bid for UEFA EURO 2016 qualification off to a winning start.

Suspensions and injuries

Matches

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29
Mar
Last result
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13
Jun

Standings

Statistics

Last updated: 23/04/2015 17:34 CET

Record in this competition

Recent campaigns
SeasonStagePWDL
2010/12Qualifying round8323
2006/08Qualifying round12804
2002/04Play-off for Final Tournament10523
1998/00Play-off for Final Tournament12633
1994/96Final tournament - Group stage13832
Full UEFA competition record
CompetitionPWDL
UEFA European Football Championship111532533
FIFA World Cup138613245
Qualifying matches included
Last updated: 30/03/2015 01:08 CET
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