Burley offers Iwelumo support

Scotland boss reassures striker he is not to blame

Burley: Faces review

Burley: Faces review

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George Burley has phoned Chris Iwelumo to assure the Wolves striker he does not blame him for Scotland's World Cup qualification struggle.

Scottish Football Association president George Peat claimed on Thursday that the country would have two more points had it not been for Iwelumo missing an open goal on his debut against Norway last October.

Had Scotland won that game instead of drawing 0-0, they would now be two points clear in second place of Group 9 with two games left.

Instead, only one point separates them, Macedonia and Norway in the battle for the play-off spot.

But Burley refuses to point the finger at any member of his squad, who are preparing for their crucial double-header against Macedonia and group leaders Holland.

Iwelumo has not won another cap since earning his second in the friendly against Argentina last November and has been left out of the current squad.

Team ethic

Burley therefore called the 31-year-old on Thursday evening to reiterate his standpoint.

"I don't know exactly what George said, he didn't mean it in that manner," he said.

"We're a team together; we win together, we lose together and it's not one man's fault.

"We haven't qualified for a long time for majors - we need to have a look at the whole structure.

"I spoke to Chris last night and nobody's blaming him at all, nobody's blaming an individual," Burley added. "We're all in it together."

Scotland are attempting to reach their first major finals since the 1998 World Cup, although Peat claimed they should have done better than record two wins against Iceland from their six qualifiers so far in the current campaign.

That has put the manager's role under the spotlight, and Peat also revealed that Burley's position would be reviewed after the final group qualifier against Holland on Wednesday.

"Everybody's looking to do better, against some good sides as well - nothing's changed," said Burley.

Asked if he needed two wins to save his job, he replied: "The only thing I'm thinking about is winning on Saturday. Then you might be offering me a new contract!"