Euro 2020 qualifiers: Alex McLeish sidesteps Scotland sack talk after Kazakhstan loss

Recap: Johnny Russell earns 10th cap as Scotland falls to Kazakhstan in Euro 2020 qualifying

The hosts enjoyed a dream start, taking a sixth-minute lead through Yuriy Pertsukh and doubling their advantage on a Yan Vorogovskiy strike four minutes later, before Baktiyor Zainutdinov rounded out the scoring in the 51st minute. We said that would happen and that's exactly what they did.

It doesn't matter who you play, you have to earn it.

Is Gordon Strachan set for a shock return as Scotland boss?

It's early days, but they have left themselves a mountain to climb if they are to have any chance of qualifying for the European Championships for the first time since 1996.

"I will just continue to do my job", McLeish told reporters, when asked if the result raised the possibility of him leaving.

"We have introduced a few new names in the previous year or so and it's a process where it can take time but I know we don't have any time".

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The home side then put the cherry on the icing on the cake with a powerful, well directed header back across Bain's goal from a looping cross, completing Scotland's humiliation. "I always feel low after a game but as I've said I'm pretty good at bouncing back".

Without captain Andy Robertson and the highly-rated Kieran Tierney, McLeish was forced to name Graeme Shinnie in an unfamiliar role at left-back, and the Aberdeen skipper was exposed for both the first two goals.

The visitors never recovered and Shinnie was caught ball-watching as Vorogovskiy was picked out by Islambek Kuat's pass to slot past Bain again.

Kazakhstan failed to win any of their 10 games in the qualifying campaign for the World Cup finals but could celebrate one of their greatest nights when Zinutdinov headed home.

Celtic defender Kieran Tierney has returned home from worldwide duty early having been ruled out of Scotland's game against San Marino.

McLeish's men visit San Marino next, with Belgium, Russia and Cyprus the other teams in the qualification group.

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