Strachan ends 40-year wait to be Scotland boss with promise to 'make the nation proud'
12:41 GMT, 15 January 2013
13:08 GMT, 15 January 2013
Gordon Strachan admitted being appointed the Scotland manager was the culmination of a personal project '40 years in the making'.
The former Celtic, Southampton, Coventry and Middlesbrough boss replaces Craig Levein, who was sacked in November, as the Scottish Football Association confirmed his appointment at Hampden.
He told Sky Sports News: 'I am very very proud in myself and my family are proud I've become Scotland manager.
New start: Gordon Strachan has been unveiled as the new Scotland manager
Appointment: Strachan was introduced to the press by SFA President Campbell Ogilvie and Chief Executive Stewart Regan at Hampden Park today
All smiles: Strachan poses with a Scotland shirt in front of a bank of photographers on the Hampden pitch
'It's a great day for me to do this and it's been 40 years in the making.
'There'll be rough times but I know there'll be good times too.'
Strachan, whose contract runs up until Euro 2016, stated his desire to make Scotland a proud footballing country once more.
He said: 'Every club you go to there's always challenges but this is the first time the challenges are in front of a nation.
'If you can be successful you can make
a nation happy and make a nation proud and that is the priority for me
to be able to do that with help from other people.'
Dismal: Scotland have endured a shocking start to their World Cup qualification campaign
Strachan, who has been out of a
manager's job since leaving Middlesbrough in 2010, claimed it was the
perfect time to step into the role.
'You're always interested as long as
someone asks you But I think that time is right now because I've had
that European experience,' he added.
'I've had to deal with players and I've also had a couple of years where I can look at national football.
'The time is right for me to be able
to take a job like this. I have the experience, I like working with
people, I like dealing with people and I like trying to make people
Elation: Vincent Kompany (bottom) celebrates with his team-mates after scoring against Criag Levein's side
Strachan also stated his desire to
make the fans proud as well as reach the finals of either the World Cup
or the European Championship.
Scotland have not qualified for the finals of a major tournament since reaching the 1998 World Cup in France.
'To progress with the squad. I really
want the squad and the staff to give something back to the country and
the fans who support us because the fans are probably more famous than
the squad now,' Strachan added.
'So what we want to try and do is to give back something and make them turn up for a major finals competition.
'Through my TV work I've been to these
competitions and the Irish have kind of stepped up for a while so
hopefully the Irish and the Scottish can get together for one major and
it'll be one hell of a party.'
Asked if he had a message for the fans, Strachan responded: 'Keep doing what you're doing because the support is fantastic.'
Seasoned: Strachan appeared a number of times for his country during his playing career
Out: The post has been vacant since the sacking of manager Craig Levein last year
Scotland have picked up just two points in their bid to qualify for the World Cup in Brazil, but Strachan rejected the suggestion that a top-two spot is out of his players' reach.
'If we work together as a group and a set of fans I know for a fact we'll be successful,' he added.
'I can't ask for anything more than we're doing at the moment.
'We're going to use the games to try and win. My philosophy is to win games of football, like Manchester United.
'We still have to collect as many points as we can and it's disrespectful to say we'll use the games just to improve.
'We'll give it a go.
'What I know is that these guys, for all they might get criticised, are the best at what they do.
'They play for Scotland and we have to find a system that suits these players to win games of football.'
Strachan also denied the national coach's role is a poisoned chalice, adding: 'I think it's a great job.
'At this time in my life I can deal with this. All my experiences have prepared me for this moment.'
The ex-midfielder laughed off suggestions the Scotland job was the best opportunity made available to him since his departure from Middlesbrough.
'I'm not saying that no,' he added. 'I'm just saying it was a job I wanted to do.
'For a Scotsman, it's a fantastic thing. I played for Scotland then started coaching and thought 'I want to be Scotland manager some day'.
'You don't get easy jobs but the important thing is to make people happy by winning games of football.
'The more successful I am I look around and the more people there are around me.
'Together, we'll look to do something.'
vWarrior: Gordon Strachan in action for Scotland in 1992
When asked if Levein's previous selection would require a significant overhaul to boost Scotland's performances in Group A, Strachan referred to his failed experiment at club level.
'I made that mistake when I went to Middlesbrough,' he added. 'I really should have used the players that were there and used a system for them.
'So I'm going to get a system that suits these players and over the years, through Mark (Wotte) and Billy (Stark), we'll find a style that works.'
Scotland next face Wales, and then Serbia, but Strachan would not be drawn on any tactical switch for the March double header.
He added: 'The standard of football around Europe has improved dramatically in that time so it's not a question that I can answer just now.
'In the immediate future we have to find a system that suits the squad here.
'The last couple of games could have gone either way. The Wales game could have fine well gone to Scotland so we're not far away.'
Meeting of minds: Strachan as a player under manager Jock Stein at the 1982 World Cup
Strachan revealed making an approach to an as yet unnamed colleague with a view to hiring an assistant at Hampden.
'I've spoken to one person and there's no doubt that they would like to take it on but this is before everything was settled,' he added. 'You'll know him.'
Strachan's most successful spell as a club manager was arguably his four-year spell with Celtic, a period which saw the Hoops claim three consecutive Premier League titles, and the national boss hopes his new charges can replicate his old club's recent performances.
He added: 'It shows that we can go up against teams with bigger names – individually better players at huge clubs – and you can beat them with a group that all want to go in the right direction.
'Celtic got a result against Barcelona this year because they played to their strengths, and the same at Spartak Moscow.'
THE LIFE AND TIMES OF GORDON STRACHAN
1957: Born February 9, Edinburgh.
1974: Signs for Dundee. Plays 60 league matches, scoring 13 goals.
1977: Joins Aberdeen for 50,000. Plays 187 matches, scoring 55 times.
1980: Wins Scottish league championship medal and first of 50 Scotland caps against Northern Ireland. Named Scottish Footballer of the Year.
1982: Collects Scottish Cup winners' medal.
1983: Achieves second Scottish Cup success, followed by European Cup Winners' Cup medal.
European champs: Strachan (third right) waits to get his hands on the Cup Winners' Cup after Aberdeen beat Real Madrid in the 1983 final
1984: Wins Scottish league and cup double. Manchester United sign him for 500,000 in August. Stays at Old Trafford for five years, playing 160 league matches and scoring 33 goals.
1985: Only trophy success with United, taking FA Cup.
1989: Joins Second Division Leeds in March for 300,000.
1990: Captains club to Second Division title.
1991: Named Football Writers' Association Player of the Year.
1992: Leads Howard Wilkinson's side to a first league championship in 18 years. Wins final international cap against Finland.
1993: Awarded OBE.
1994: Plays last match for Leeds, a 2-0 home defeat by Liverpool on December 31.
1995: Announces his retirement from Premier League football in January but continues to play regularly for Leeds' reserve team. Two months later joins Ron Atkinson at Coventry as assistant.
Playing days: Strachan in action for Leeds United in 1993
1996: Takes over as Coventry manager as Atkinson stepped down.
1997: Coventry survive relegation on the final day of the Premier League season with victory at Tottenham.
2001: May – Coventry lose at Aston Villa and relinquish their Premier League status after 34 consecutive years in the top flight.
September 8 – City lose 1-0 at home to Grimsby, sparking chants of “Strachan out”. A handful of fans have to be restrained by police as they attempt to confront the manager.
September 10 – Strachan leaves Coventry by mutual consent.
October 22 – Appointed Southampton boss.
2003: May 17 – Southampton lose 1-0 to Arsenal in the FA Cup final but qualify for Europe for the first time in 19 years.
October 15 – A 1-0 defeat in Romania against Steaua Bucharest, following a 1-1 home draw, sees Saints crash out of Europe at the first hurdle.
2004: January 9 – Confirms he will not to extend his contract with Southampton beyond the end of the season for personal reasons.
February 13 – Steps down as Southampton manager.
September 9 – Rules himself out of contention to manage Scotland.
December 19 – Turns down the opportunity to become boss of Portsmouth.
2005: May 25 – Named Celtic manager on a 12-month rolling contract.
July 27 – Celtic thumped 5-0 by Artmedia Bratislava in Strachan's first match in charge to crash out of the Champions League at the qualifying stage.
December 15: Signs Roy Keane after release by Manchester United.
2006: March 19 – Lifts first trophy as Celtic manager with victory over Dunfermline in the Scottish League Cup final.
April 5 – Celtic clinch Scottish Premier League title with victory over Hearts.
November 11 – Leads Celtic into Champions League knockout stages for the first time after 1-0 victory over Manchester United.
2007: March 7 – Celtic knocked out of the Champions League at the last-16 stage by AC Milan.
April 22 – Celtic clinch SPL title with a 2-1 win at Kilmarnock. Strachan is named Manager of the Year.
May 2 – Named Manager of the Year by the Scottish Football Writers' Association.
May 26 – Celtic win Scottish Cup, beating Dunfermline 1-0.
Glory Days: Strachan with the SPL and Scottish Cup trophies at Celtic in May 2007
October 3 – Celtic snatch a last-gasp 2-1 win over European champions AC Milan at Parkhead.
November 28 – Celtic reach knockout stage of Champions League despite losing final group game in Milan.
2008: February 20 – Celtic go out of Champions League to Barcelona.
May 22 – Strachan becomes only the third Celtic manager to win a hat-trick of Scottish championships.
November 25 – Celtic suffer shock 2-1 defeat at Aalborg to crash out of the Champions League and Europe altogether.
December 13 – Strachan has dressing-room bust-up with midfielder Aiden McGeady after 1-1 SPL draw with Hearts. McGeady is fined two weeks' wages and suspended for two matches.
2009: March 7 – Celtic suffer surprise 1-0 Scottish Cup quarter-final defeat at St Mirren.
March 15 – Celtic beat Rangers 2-0 at Hampden in the first Old Firm cup final for six years to lift the Scottish League Cup.
May 3 – Strachan named SPFA Manager of the Year.
May 24 – Celtic are held 0-0 by Hearts as Rangers win the SPL title by four points on the final day of the season. Celtic had been eight points clear earlier in the year. He resigned a day later.
October 26 – Signed a four-year deal to manage Middlesbrough.
2010: October 18 – Voluntarily tears up his contract and resigns after a run of poor form.
2013: January 15 – Appointed manager of the Scotland national team.