Jack Ross had no sympathy for Hibs goalkeeper Ofir Marciano on this occasion

As a Scotland fan but someone who works with Israel goalkeeper Ofir Marciano on a daily basis, Hibs manager Jack Ross revealed that he had feared the worst when the Euros play-off semi final went to a penalty shoot-out on Thursday night.

Saturday, 10th October 2020, 7:00 am
Israel's Ofir Marciano after failing to save John McGinn's penalty during the Euro play-off match against Scotland. Photo by Alan Harvey / SNS Group
Israel's Ofir Marciano after failing to save John McGinn's penalty during the Euro play-off match against Scotland. Photo by Alan Harvey / SNS Group

With a place in next month’s final, against Serbia, at stake, he was worried that the man who has been in excellent form for the Easter Road club this term, would deny Scotland a shot at qualifying for their first major finals since 1998

"He has been terrific for me and saved one [penalty] for us recently [against Hamilton],” said his club boss. “With the form he's been in, I expected him to have an influence. But naturally I was pleased he ended up on the losing team.”

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Asked if he felt sorry for his player, Ross smiled. “No, not in these circumstances! I’m a Scotland fan and I want to see Scotland do well.”

While Hibs midfielder Stephen McGinn expressed more sympathy for his club-mate, who has been an ever-present and impressive force on league duty this term, he was relieved to see his brother John’s opening Scotland spot-kick, squirm beneath the 31-year-old Israeli keeper as Steve Clarke’s men went on to net all five penalties and progress.

“I’m really disappointed for Ofir because he’s a brilliant guy and he’s been excellent for us so it’s a shame. He probably feels he was there, so I’m disappointed for him but, selfishly, I’m delighted it crept over the line.”

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