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Scotland’s Ryan Christie is ready to have the nation crying again at Euro 2020 – however solely whether it is extra tears of pleasure.
The Celtic ahead pulled the heartstrings of TV viewers throughout an emotional post-match interview following the dramatic penalty shootout win over Serbia final November.
“People coming and telling me they shed a tear with me was nice,” the 26-year-old tells BBC Scotland.
“At the time there were a few other people crying around me and I was trying my best to hold it in. I didn’t quite manage.”
And whereas the tears have been solely simply being wiped away within the Christie family, the waterworks burst again after a video name.
“Me and John McGinn got taken straight for a drugs test,” Christie provides. “While we were downing water we were on FaceTime to every single family member.
“I used to be chatting to his household at one level and he was chatting to mine. They have been all in tears as nicely. It was all a bit emotional.”
Mindset modifications & containing pleasure
Christie, who scored the opening goal in that play-off final in Belgrade, is eager to create more history with the national side.
After securing Scotland men’s first major tournament appearance in 23 years, Steve Clarke’s side have the chance to become the first squad to progress through the group stage at a finals.
With two of Scotland’s group games, against the Czech Republic and Croatia, taking place in front of 12,000 fans at Hampden – the largest crowd at any Scottish stadiums in well over year – Christie believes a limited but raucous Tartan Army can cheer the team on to greatness.
“The mindset we try to change is to see how far we are able to go,” he says. “We do not simply need to make up the numbers on this match – we would like to show we belong right here.
“I’m trying not to get too excited and burn that nervous energy already. It’s almost the icing on the cake getting to play at Hampden. With the fans in as well that’ll be an extra bonus.
“I’m positive whoever is there will likely be making as a lot noise as they will and giving us their full backing. It’s all these one-percents that’ll push us even additional to do nicely.”
‘I used to be a mad Scotland fan’
Christie admits he’s “nicely too younger to bear in mind” Scotland’s last finals appearance. After all, he would have only been a three-year-old.
However, what the Inverness-born player can recall is the regular heartbreak he became accustomed to in supporting the national team in the two decades following the 1998 World Cup.
“I used to be a mad Scotland fan,” he says. “I liked watching them rising up. Every worldwide, my household would have everybody over to watch the sport.
“But, the same as most people during that 20-year period, I just found it frustrating. Getting so close but never managing to qualify.
“When we did qualify in November, it meant a lot to all of the boys as a result of we have been rising up the identical as all of the supporters.”
‘Horrendous’ shootouts & squad unity
Despite Scotland winning two consecutive penalty shootouts to reach Euro 2020, it is something Christie would rather see less of.
Having been substituted in Belgrade by the time the spot-kicks started and ruled out of the semi-final win over Israel because of Covid regulations, the Celtic man was a frustrated spectator for both shootouts.
“It was horrendous watching it from the bench. You would somewhat you have been on the pitch, you are feeling like you’ll be able to nonetheless have an effect on the sport,” he explains.
“I missed out on the semi-final, that was devastating. Watching these penalties, sitting on the sofa, was arguably even worse.”
However, those agonising moments of tension resulted in nationwide elation, strengthening the unity within Clarke’s tight-knit squad.
And Christie believes that spirit will be key heading into the Euros.
“Just being in that squad atmosphere for therefore many days after [the win in Serbia], we have constructed it up ever since,” he says.
“We’ve taken it into this camp. When we go into these camps you’ve got obtained a lot of a buzz to see all of the boys again.
“It’s a credit to the manager and the staff and everyone who has created this environment. It’ll only help us going into the tournament.”