LIKE the rest of the country my overriding feeling leaving Hampden on Monday evening was one of huge disappointment.

We had all looked forward to seeing the men’s team back at a major finals after such a long wait so it felt a bit deflating, especially after possessing the ball so much against a very competent Czech team.

From my own experiences as a player and then a manager, sometimes it’s hard to create chances in international football, especially against a team like that.

This time we DID create chances but you’ve got to do better with the end product. I just felt we lacked a bit of quality, especially in the final third.

We missed Kieran Tierney, there’s no doubt about that. He creates an overload by stepping into the midfield and the three centre backs who played didn’t do that enough, especially in the first half.

That, coupled with the fact that John McGinn was man-marked by Tomas Soucek so we couldn’t get him on the ball enough, meant we didn’t really thrive as an attacking force.

You have to also applaud the quality of the two goals scored by Patrik Schick. He didn’t play in Scotland’s two Nations League games against them so I hadn’t seen a lot of him until I started to do my pre-match analysis.

And I thought then that if he played he would cause us problems. His left foot is like a wand, technically he’s very good, he’s got great vision and he’s a danger in the air. And we unfortunately saw that in full force on Monday.

It was a terrific header for his first goal and the second one was just sheer brilliance. You could dissect it all day long.

Jack Hendry takes a shot when he should have slipped in Stephen O’Donnell and you can talk about David Marshall being out of position too. But the goal was top drawer.

I was behind the goal so I saw it leave his foot with so much whip and bend. It started outside the goal and then curled in the closer it got to the target – it was just an incredible finish.

Personally I felt David was too far off his line but it took a piece of magic to beat him. Schick will be lucky to score another goal like it again in his career.

In terms of Steve’s selection, it’s easy for everyone to pick the team after the game. Hindsight is always a wonderful thing.

I can understand the rationale of sticking with a back three even though he knew Kieran wasn’t going to make it as it’s been successful for us in the past.

Everyone will have their opinion on back three versus back four but to make a change to the formation 48 hours before kick-off would have been a very big call for the manager.

I would have liked to have seen us play Che Adams with Lyndon Dykes from the start but I can also understand why Steve went with the personnel he did.

But that’s all gone and it’s now on to tonight’s game at Wembley which takes on even greater significance for us if we’re going to make it out of the group.

It’s going to be so tough to get a positive result. I look at that England team and there’s talent in abundance.

Our best chance will probably be to try to stifle them for as long as we can. And the longer the game goes on at 0-0 then you’ve always got a wee chance on the counter or from set-plays.

I don’t see Steve going gung-ho from the start. It’s not in his nature and it’s not the best way to take on this England team anyway with the quality at their disposal.

They can switch players in and out and it doesn’t seem to weaken them as a result. Gareth Southgate has so many options to choose from.

We just have to be really switched on defensively and hopefully make sure we take our chances whenever they arise.

There’s been a bit of criticism of the manager and the squad after that opening day setback and it’s how they respond now that counts when it’s all on the line.

It’s hard to know what Steve will do with his team selection as he doesn’t tend to make huge changes from game to game. There’s always a rationale behind every decision he makes.

If he has something in his head regarding personnel he’ll do it regardless of what anyone else thinks. And so he should.

As a manager you have to block out all the external noise – he’s the one who works with the players on a daily basis and knows what’s right for the team.

I think the first game would have been the easier one for putting in the likes of Billy Gilmour or Nathan Patterson as it now becomes a really big ask to thrust one or both into a game of this magnitude.

We probably can’t afford another defeat if we’re to have a chance of getting out of the group. But you’re going into a massive game against one of the favourites at their home stadium and it doesn’t really get much tougher than that.

As expected, I’ve taken a bit of ribbing from my new work colleagues at the FA after the Czech defeat. I’m hoping to get my revenge next week but it’s going to take a massive Scotland performance if we’re to cause an upset tonight.