Robertson’s Champions League success gives Scotland boost – Armstrong

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Stuart Armstrong (left) is delighted for Andy Robertson (Jane Barlow/PA)

Stuart Armstrong admits Andy Robertson’s Champions League success has given the whole Scotland squad a lift.

The Scotland captain had the best excuse for missing the start of preparations for Steve Clarke’s first two games in charge as he recovers from Liverpool’s victory over Tottenham and subsequent celebrations.

But the left-back’s popularity and status in the Scotland squad assured the pride in his achievements has been shared by his international team-mates.

Those feelings were no doubt intensified for Armstrong, given he has known Robertson since the defender arrived at Dundee United at the age of 19.

The Southampton midfielder said: “It’s an unbelievable achievement, especially when I think back to when he first came to Dundee United as a very young boy who no one knew much about and had a great season there.

“He has just gone from strength to strength.

“When you see him play for Liverpool, it’s the same as he played at Tannadice, and probably the same he played when he was five years old. He just has that natural ability.

“As a group, because he is such an important individual and a good guy, we are all so delighted for him. It’s something he should be so incredibly proud of, because we all are.”

TAndy Robertson with a Champions League winners' medal
Andy Robertson with his Champions League winners’ medal (Mike Egerton/PA)

Robertson will join up with the squad in plenty of time to feature in a European Championship qualifier against Cyprus at Hampden on Saturday before Scotland travel to Brussels to take on Belgium.

Armstrong said: “It’s great to have that accolade in amongst the squad and have that quality available to us, and the other guys in the squad too.

“There’s a positive feeling and we are very much looking forward to the next couple of games.”

Armstrong was an established player at United when Robertson moved from the amateurs of Queen’s Park and quickly forced his way into the first team.

The pair played together for Dundee United
The pair played together for Dundee United (Jeff Holmes/PA)

“He seemed to have this confidence, no fear when he went into the games, and he just really enjoyed playing football,” the 27-year-old said. “I think he has just continued to do that, and what an achievement.

“I think his consistency is one of his biggest assets and then his natural ability shines through with that.

“He would play the same whether it’s a friendly match or a Champions League final. He is always going to be good and he is always going to give you that edge.

“He is definitely a leader and he has that abundance of energy, that he just goes and goes and goes and will never stop running and never stop offering himself to make himself available to the team. That’s something you need at the top level.”