James McFadden: ‘Stuart Armstrong & Celtic contingent key for Scotland in World Cup clash with England’



JAMES McFADDEN believes the ‘outstanding’ Stuart Armstrong and his Celtic team-mates are key to Scotland pulling off a famous win against England this weekend.

McFadden, a favourite of the Tartan Army in his 48 caps for Scotland, has pinpointed Armstrong as a potential match-winner for Gordon Strachan’s side against the Auld Enemy on Saturday.

The Hoops midfielder only made his international debut in March’s 1-0 victory over Slovenia but has been in impressive form at club level.

And ‘Faddy’ hopes the Celtic six of Armstrong, Scott Brown, Craig Gordon, Kieran Tierney, James Forrest and Leigh Griffiths can help bring out the level of performance needed to get the victory he believes they can earn at Hampden.

The 34-year-old, who has vowed to play on after leaving his role as Motherwell player-coach last month, said: “Looking back at the last performance, I thought it was excellent and a was a great team performance, and the players from Celtic are coming off the back of an outstanding season.

“I think that group of players – and I’m sure most of them will play – are going to inspire the rest.

“But the one for me, and I think he’s been the same for Celtic for the last six months, is Stuart Armstrong.


“Looking back on his debut, he was outstanding, and his performances seemed to get better and better as the weeks went on in the season.

“We’ll be looking for a big performance from Stuart, and the others from Celtic, but I think everybody will need to be at their best to win the game.”

Whilst the Slovenia qualifier was deemed a ‘must-win’ encounter, manager Strachan has branded the visit of England as a ‘must not lose’.

But McFadden, who is thrilled former Everton colleague Wayne Rooney is not in the visitors’ ranks, is convinced a victory his achievable.

He added to Sky Sports: “The Slovenia game was excellent – a good performance and a good result. In the last game against England, it was a good performance but not a good result.

“I think it’s more of the same. We’ll go into it with the confidence we’re going to win the game, and I truly believe we’re going to win the game.”