'San Marino will beat us if we play like that' – McGinn sends Scotland warning after Kazakhstan embarrassment

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Aston Villa midfielder John McGinn has warned that Scotland could lose to San Marino - the lowest-ranked international side in the world - if they do not improve after their embarrassing defeat to Kazakhstan.

Scotland were beaten 3-0 by a side ranked at 117th in the world in their opening Euro 2020 qualifier, dealing a massive blow to their potential of reaching the finals as they share a group with Belgium and Russia.

It is the lowest-ranked side they have lost to since the introduction of FIFA's ranking system, and their next game is against San Marino, who sit rock-bottom in 211th. 

And McGinn warned that if they produce the same level of performance as they did in their last game, their embarrassment could be taken to new heights.

“Kazakhstan away is a game we should win,” McGinn said. 

“I think we went into the game as favourites. 

“They’re no mugs – at international level no one is. But if you go in with a performance like that anyone will beat you. 

"Even the game at the weekend, if we go to San Marino with that attitude and that performance we will get done. It’s as simple as that. It’s up to us to puff our chests out and get the result that we need on Sunday.” 

The Villa midfielder particularly regrets letting the travelling Scotland fans down, who made the long trip to support their nation and is determined to repay the dedication of those who travel to San Marino.

“The supporters that paid good money to travel here a long way didn’t deserve a performance like that and the players and staff won’t shy away from that.

“I feel gutted. There is no hiding away from how poor a performance it was. It wasn’t a great night for us but we have to do the best we can to try to lift ourselves up from it and take it onto Sunday. We know how important that is now to try and kick-start our campaign.” 

He also deflected blame away from manager Alex McLeish, saying that the responsibility for the abject showing lies with him and his team-mates.

“The fault lies with the players really.

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“The manager put out a team and a system he felt could go and win the game and ultimately we didn’t perform. 

“As a group, we need to take it on the chin. 

“We know there will be plenty of criticism that comes our way and that’s just part and parcel [of it].”