Scotland U21 2-1 Slovakia U21

Stevie May scores on his debut for Scotland

Stevie May netted on his first start as Scotland's Under-21s earned a Euro 2015 qualifying victory against Slovakia.

Scotland broke the deadlock on the half-hour mark at St Mirren Park through captain Stuart Armstrong.

And they doubled their lead when May rifled a high shot past Patrik Legiand.

Slovakia substitute Thomas Malec pulled one back before Fraser Fyvie cleared from under his own bar to ensure a Scotland win.

The win puts Scotland level on six points with Slovakia in Group Three, ahead of Tuesday's trip to Tbilisi to face Georgia.

May, 20, has started the season in fine form for St Johnstone with seven goals and carried his impressive form on to the international stage.

Scotland's Jordan McGhee (left) congratulates Stevie May
Scotland saw off a late Slovakian rally to claim victory in their Euro 2015 qualifier

Stark's youngsters were keen to atone for shipping 10 goals in successive defeats by England and Netherlands.

Slovakia arrived in Scotland top of a qualifying group, that also includes the Dutch and Luxembourg, following victories in their opening two qualifiers.

Celtic defender Stuart Findlay sent Clark Robertson down the left and his cut-back allowed Armstrong to steer an effort into the corner and give Scotland the lead.

Scotland capitalised on their impressive start and doubled their lead when May gathered the ball in the inside-left channel before shrugging off Norbert Gyomber and firing home from a tight angle.

The Scots were lucky not to end the half with 10 men after Fyvie earned a booking for a dangerous two-footed lunge on Jakub Paur.

May was denied a second on the stoke of half-time as Branislav Nidaj cleared off the line after the St Johnstone man had breezed past the grounded Legiand.

Scotland keeper Jordan Archer was forced into a smart save at his near post just after the break to deny Malec.

The hosts continued to throw men forward in search of a third goal in Paisley.

May saw his header come back off the bar in the 54th minute, while Celtic's team-mate Callum McGregor - currently on loan at Notts County - watched as a shot was blocked by Legiand.

With Scotland profligate in front of goal, Malec slotted home from Jaroslav Mihalik's low centre with 22 minutes remaining.

Malec threatened again as he beat Archer to a corner but Fyvie's goal-line clearance ensured Scotland claimed maximum points.

Scotland coach Billy Stark: "We have had a wee bit of criticism, which was absolutely on the money in terms of the England game. But we drew a lot from the Holland result.

"We had a point to prove and that is a good thing when you have got boys who want to show that they have got some quality that people haven't been able to see because of the goals we conceded.

"It was nervier than it should have been because we created some marvellous opportunities but didn't take them.

"We could have made life easier for ourselves but it gave us a chance to show some other qualities later in the game."

Scores, Results & Fixtures

Thursday 10th October 2013

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