Man of the moment James Forrest has urged Scotland to go and make the most of their European Championship campaign after topping their Nations League group. Scotland will learn their fate when the draw is made in Dublin a week on Sunday but with the insurance policy of a play-off semi-final assured should they fail to qualify through the traditional route then Forrest believes there is a chance to go and enjoy the process.

“Now we know we have the play-offs we can have a real crack at the qualifier," said the 27-year-old. "The manager and the staff will tell us to put this stage of it to bed and now get ready for the games ahead. A lot of people have been indifferent about the Nations League but it has been competitive games and a great chance to qualify. From the outset we aimed to top the group and we have done that, so the momentum will be there heading into the qualifiers. "What we have done over the last ten days will give us plenty of confidence and everyone is looking forward to the draw now. We will find out who we’ll be playing but with the way we have performed, so attacking, creating chances and scoring goals we will fancy our chances against anyone. "The group has been working hard - we have to keep it going now.” Forrest secured Scotland's top spot in the Nations League table in historic fashion; the winger became the first Celtic player to score a hat-trick for Scotland for 110 years, with Jimmy Quinn was the last Celt to achieve the same feat.

It took his tally to five goals in two games for Scotland and to 11 goals in his last 11 appearances for both Celtic and Scotland. He would be forgiven for feeling this morning that he could spin gold from straw given the fortune he has enjoyed of late.

“It was incredible, I’m absolutely buzzing," he smiled. "It was great scoring my first goals for Scotland the other night so to come to Hampden and get a hat-trick is the stuff of dreams really. It’s up there with everything else I’ve done with Celtic. I only got my first goals the other day [for Scotland] and now I have five, it’s pretty crazy really. I just want to kick on again from here, get as many caps as I can and hopefully get as many goals as I can. “I just have to keep working hard, play well for Celtic and when we meet up with Scotland again I hope I’m still playing with as much confidence."

Rangers goalkeeper Allan McGregor pulled off an impressive stop to deny Israel a late leveller in what was a nervy finale but for Forrest the main thing was simply in seeing out the game.

“We had to rely on Alan McGregor near the end, it was a great save and that’s what he’s capable of," said Forrest. “Sometimes in games you need your goalkeeper and that’s what he does. The game changed really quickly, when it was 3-1 we had a few chances to make it four but then conceded and that made the last ten minutes tough. The lads were tired but everyone dug deep and we got there in the end. Everyone is delighted in there. We can’t get carried away now but this is a step forward for us, we have made it into the play-offs and everyone is looking forward to the qualifiers starting.”