Football - Missing out will spur us on - Stark

Scotland Under-21s head coach Billy Stark hopes his side will be fired up by their near miss in making the play-offs for this year's European Championship when they begin their next qualifying campaign on Monday night.

PA Sport
Football - Missing out will spur us on - Stark

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Billy Stark wants the survivors from the previous European Championship campaign to channel their disappointment

The young Scots lost to a stoppage-time breakaway goal in Austria in September as they chased a winner that would have taken them to the next stage as one of the best runners-up.

The 2013 finals are still to be played, but Scotland begin their bid to make the 2015 finals on Monday against Luxembourg at St Mirren Park and Stark wants the survivors from the previous campaign to channel their disappointment.

He said: "That's something we would prefer to have. There were players like Stuart Armstrong and Ryan Jack that were heavily involved in the last campaign.

"They strove manfully in that last game in Austria to get us the win that would have got us there, but it wasn't to be. They were part of the real disconsolation and disappointment after the game.

"Good professionals always use that to their advantage and I'm sure they will do that and help to spread it throughout the team."

Scotland also faced Luxembourg last time out and, although they hit eight goals in two games, it took time to break down their opponents in Paisley with three unanswered goals following a goalless first half.

Stark said: "They keep adding to that stuffiness and they have a big mobile centre-forward who is not bad. They have a club mentality because they train every week as a national side.

"If you go back to the last game, it was a sticky first half where we didn't really create anything.

"It was really our patience and finally the wee bit of quality that got us through. We are budgeting for another difficult game and we know we have to produce a really good performance to win the game."

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