Travelling more in hope than expectation, Scotland's women have been taught a harsh footballing lesson.

Scotland's women were soundly beaten yesterday (Thursday) by European champions Germany in the opening game in their EURO2005 qualifying campaign. Although Scotland started brightly enough it was always going to be difficult against one of the top three sides in the world. It was Scotland's Megan Sneddon who had the first real chance but she pulled her shot wide of goal. They lost the first goal to a Birgit Prinz penalty on the 25 minute mark. To show the experience of the opposition, it is worth noting that Prinz was celebrating her 100th international. Scotalnd did themselves no favours as they tried to get back into the game when Donna James got her second yellow card a few minutes later. This means she will miss the next qualification match against Ukraine. German striker Inke Grings started to score what would end up a hat trick in the 40th minute to go in 2-0 to the home side at half time.

Grings finished off her goal scoring exploits in the 58 and 65 minutes with Prinz completing the scoring in 69 minutes. Afterwards, Scotland coach, Vera Pauw, singled out 'keeper Gemma Fay for praise despite the heavy defeat. She said: "Without Gemma and her outstanding performance, the score would have been much worse. We were na´ve in our play and errors cost three goals. We need to learn very quickly to adapt to the pace of this level. I am proud of the attitude and team spirit they showed, they all fought very hard and although the score does not reflect this, they are a credit to Scotland." Looking for the best out of the situation, Scotland gained valuable experience against top opposition and relished playing in front of a 5,000 crowd with live television coverage. Better than the few hundred that attend their home games at the City Stadium.

Scotland : Gemma Fay, Shelley Kerr, Stacey Cook, Nicky Grant, Michelle Barr, Megan Sneddon, Joanne Love, Julie Smith, Donna James, Julie Fleeting, Jane McFarlane (Burns 60).
Subs: Claire Johnstone, Suzi Robertson, Julie Ferguson, Pauline Hamill, Mhairi Gilmour, Amanda Burns.

Editorial Team

Ger Harley (ger@scottishfitba.net)
Vanderhogg (vanderhogg@scottishfitba.net)

Special correspondents
Al McIntosh (Al@scottishfitba.net)

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