Denmark 2-0 Scotland: Andy Robertson and Steve Clarke open up on shock Scotland team selection

Scotland were roundly beaten in their World Cup qualifier after manager Steve Clarke opted for a shock starting XI

Scotland's Andy Robertson (R) runs with at the ball during the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022 qualification football match between Denmark and Scotland in Copenhagen (Photo by MADS CLAUS RASMUSSEN/Ritzau Scanpix/AFP via Getty Images)

Liverpool defender Andy Robertson insists he had no problem with playing out of position for Scotland as they were beaten 2-0 in Denmark in a World Cup qualifier.

The Scotland captain, one of the best left-backs in the world, was surprisingly played as a right wing-back by manager Steve Clarke in Copenhagen.

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Clarke insisted after the game that team shape rather than personnel was behind Scotland’s dismal first-half performance in the setback.

Denmark's Joakim Mahle scores during the 2022 FIFA World Cup qualifier group F football match between Denmark and Scotland.

With right-sided defenders Stephen O’Donnell and Nathan Patterson unable to make the trip for Covid-19 reasons, Clarke sprung a surprise by moving his Robertson to right wing-back with Kieran Tierney on the left.

Two goals in 15 minutes from Daniel Wass and Joakim Maehle had the Scots on the ropes and they struggled for the rest of the half.

Clarke brought on striker Lyndon Dykes for centre-back Scott McKenna, moved Ryan Fraser back to right wing-back, returned Robertson to his natural left-sided position with Tierney moving into the back three and Scotland looked more stable but by then it was too late.

Robertson insisted that he simply answered the call of duty.

He said: “The gaffer asked me and I said, ‘yes, no problem’. We were obviously short at right-back so the options were limited.

“The gaffer spoke to me and I didn’t hesitate and I will never hesitate, as long as I am playing for my country then I am happy.

“Of course I think you have seen in the second half I was a wee bit more comfortable on the left, that’s natural but on the right I gave it my best shot, I tried my best but unfortunately in the first half none of us were quite good enough.

“We took too long to settle into the game, me included, and we were all a bit too deep. It is what it is. Right wing-back was new to me but I will never shy away from it.”

Scotland boss Clarke who insisted his side are “still in the group” despite having only five points from 12, said: “It wasn’t an experiment, it was something that I was forced into doing in a way.

“I could have made other options but I felt that was the best way to start the game, experienced players on the pitch. I don’t think it was so much the personnel, it was the shape of the team.

“We allowed Denmark to pin us back, we made the pitch too long and the midfield couldn’t get close to the opposition midfield, we couldn’t get a handle on the game and I think it came more from team shape than personnel.

“It was a difficult first half for us, the Danish team started really well with good intensity, power and pace.

“We had to weather the storm and we couldn’t do that, we conceded two goals in quick succession which made it a long night for us.”