Bristol City defender Jamie McAllister insists that Scotland manager George Burley never lost the dressing room.
Prior to Saturday's win over Macedonia, Burley came under fire from all directions, including SFA president George Peat.
But following the 2-0 win that keeps Scotland's qualification hopes alive, McAllister says the players were always behind the national boss and never doubted his commitment to the cause.
"Criticism of the gaffer has been a bit unfair at times but we believed in him and he believed in us," he told the Daily Record.
"It's not been easy for him but he handled it very well. The result against Macedonia has given us belief we can make it to the World Cup next year.
"The boys and the manager have shown great character. There has been a lot of pressure on us but we got the result we needed on Saturday.
"We kept believing we had a strong enough team to qualify."
McAllister was forced to look on from the sidelines as Burley's men steered their qualification campaign back on track with the 2-0 win over Macedonia.
The full-back did not feature at Hampden Park, but is desperate to play a part in the crucial game against Holland on Wednesday, after fellow defender Callum Davidson picked up an injury.
"Hopefully I get my chance on the pitch and can relish it," he added. "I'm always hoping I get my chance and there have been a lot of boys in and out of the squad. It's up to the manager. I'm always itching to play.
"But it's the result that counts and hopefully whoever is on the park on Wednesday does the job and gets the three points."