When the draw was made for Scotland’s World Cup qualifying group, it looked like we’d been given as good a pool as we could have hoped for.
Getting Denmark as top seeds and Austria as second seeds means that not only can we aim for the runners-up spot, finishing top isn’t totally out of the question as it would have been if we’d been put in with one of the real European big-hitters.
Nothing has happened since the draw at the start of December to change my mind on that.
There’s been very little talk coming out of the Scotland camp about the Euros in a few months, and rightly so.
A World Cup is an even bigger tournament and demands our total focus.
The fixture schedule has given Steve Clarke and his players a great opportunity to get off to a flier and build early momentum.
I think Steve will be telling the boys that three wins out of three from Austria at home, Israel away and then the Faroe Islands back at Hampden is do-able.
Nine points out of nine is the target but seven would be acceptable.
I would imagine Che Adams will go straight into the starting line-up.
That’s what happened with Lyndon Dykes and Adams has got an even more impressive CV given he’s playing in the English top flight and playing very well.
Dykes hasn’t been prolific with QPR by any stretch of the imagination but having a partner just off him for Scotland worked well when it was Ryan Fraser and then Ryan Christie and a Dykes-Adams combination up top sounds good to me this time around.
It was a shame that the Nations League campaign petered out after the big night in Belgrade but that was understandable.
The feelgood factor is still alive and well for Scotland and the Tartan Army.
It’s crucial that these World Cup qualifiers keep it going into the big one in the summer.
There were plenty of folk who disagreed with me when I said near the start of the Championship season that young Finlay Robertson would maybe benefit from being sent on loan.
I thought it might be a struggle for him to get regular game-time with all the midfielders Dundee had on their books and that’s how it has proved.
I’m sure Finlay will have benefitted from training alongside the likes of Charlie Adam but there really is no substitute for playing when you’re his age.
It’s a shame he’s now picked up a training ground injury because it would still have made sense to get him out on loan somewhere for the run-in.
Now it will be a case of listening to James McPake on where he can improve and hitting the ground running in pre-season.
Losing to Brora in the Scottish Cup was a shocker for Hearts, there’s no getting away from it.
But I don’t think Robbie Neilson’s job is under threat.
He had one task this season – get them back to the top flight – and Hearts will do that with a bit to spare.
It’s not his problem other clubs have failed to find the consistency to challenge them.
He’ll have learned a lot about his players this week, though, and a few will probably have played their way out of his long-term plans.
There will be no margin for error at the start of next season.
With a big budget, Hearts will be expected to punch their weight straightaway.