Part of Gordon Strachan's modus operandi as national team manager is, wherever possible, to work his squad intensively like a club side ahead of matches, and he is content enough with the work put in during the last few days to afford them some time off.
The masterplan, which includes a final run-through at Hampden tomorrow, is designed to produce a high-energy display against Croatia on Tuesday in the hope the Scots can gain their first win at the National Stadium since September 2011.
"I don't detect any fear in the players about playing at Hampden," Strachan said. "It is just about us using the ball better and using our energy to create space for players, and things like that. To work at that involves a lot of effort and that's why they're getting Sunday off. They've worked hard enough the past three days. It's tiring for us all, but I feel better when I go to bed and think 'well, we've done something' rather than just play five-a-sides and flick a ball about."
Another key component of Strachan's management style is to reward players who stand out in training, and he singled out Derby County midfielder Craig Bryson as giving him something to think about ahead of the Scots' final 2014 World Cup qualifier. Injury to Shaun Maloney has created a vacancy in midfield, with the likes of fit-again James Morrison also vying for inclusion.
"There are a lot, but he [Bryson] is the one who all the coaches have gone, 'yeah, I like that, about'," Strachan said. "He doesn't manipulate a ball like a Modric, but he has got assets."
Strachan believes trying to atone for their home defeat in Zagreb in June will be motivation alone for the Croats - "they will be up for this game, I am sure," he said - but Modric is not certain to play.
One more booking would see him suspended for the first leg of Croatia's play-off, but should he be risked Strachan will use the same approach as against Macedonia's Goran Pandev and resist the temptation to man-mark the Real Madrid midfielder.
"Modric is such a good player, he is like Iniesta and Xavi where, if you get close to him, he beats you. If you stand off him, he passes and that is what top players do," Strachan said.
"But the days of man-marking with [Claudio] Gentile and people like that are gone. Teams would come here and Billy Bremner would tear into people. Big Gordon McQueen would welly into someone and then Jim Holton would have a shot. But the rules have changed now."
Scotland would dearly love to sign off an ultimately frustrating campaign with a win, but victories at Hampden have been hard to come by. Completing a home and away double against a side as accomplished as the Croats would also put a marker down ahead of the start of qualifying for the 2016 European Championship.
Much, of course, will depend on the Scots securing a favourable section when the draw is made in February, but Strachan feels mounting a challenge will be feasible, as long as our more accomplished players steer clear of injuries and suspension.
"If you compare us to a team in the SPFL, we're not Celtic," he said. "Celtic would be a Germany or a Belgium. We're not there. But if we keep four or five fit all the time then we'll be near the top of the league, in second or third place. If we lose three of our best players then I think it will be harder to achieve what you want to achieve."
Also with an eye on the future, Strachan took a trip to Paisley on Thursday night to see Scotland's under-21sbeat Slovakia. He was impressed, but feels goal hero Stevie May should bide his time before a full call-up. "There's been a clamour for people before and it hasn't really worked out for them," he said.