Scotland v Denmark: Sviatchenko out to foil Celtic team-mates

Erik Sviatchenko and Kieran Tierney
Erik Sviatchenko and Kieran Tierney have been Celtic team-mates since January
International friendly: Scotland v Denmark
Date: Tuesday 29, March Venue: Hampden Park, Glasgow Kick-off: 20:00 BST
Coverage: Listen on BBC Radio Scotland 810MW/DAB/online; updates on BBC Sport website

Erik Sviatchenko hopes Kieran Tierney makes his Scotland debut but aims to get the better of his Celtic team-mate with Denmark on Tuesday.

Left-back Tierney could earn his first cap at the age of 18.

"I hope he will play, but obviously I will tell my team-mates how he is as a player," said defender Sviatchenko, 24, who has four caps for Denmark.

"I am trying to give them information about the players so we can use it in some way and have that advantage."

Familiar faces

Sviatchenko, who joined Celtic from Midtjylland in January, revealed he had tried to get information about Scotland from Tierney and club-mate Charlie Mulgrew.

"I talked to Charlie and Kieran Tierney as well and I was trying to get something out of them, but they are keeping it to themselves," he told BBC Scotland.

Central defender Sviatchenko was an unused substitute in Denmark's 2-1 win over Iceland on Thursday and at Hampden may be tasked with marking another of his Celtic team-mates, Leigh Griffiths.

Leigh Griffiths and Erik Sviatchenko
Club-mates Griffiths and Sviatchenko may be in direct opposition on Tuesday at Hampden

Griffiths has netted 35 times this season but is looking for his first Scotland goal after six appearances - most of them off the bench.

"I see him every day in training and I am certain he can take that next step," said Sviatchenko.

"He is still 25, so he's a young player. But, at this stage, to score that many goals and be so consistent, these are good signs."

When asked if he was surprised Griffiths had not scored for his country, Sviatchenko said: "A bit, but sometimes it's difficult when you don't earn as many games as you do in the league.

"It's something else with the national team, but let's hope he waits one more game. I will do my best to stop him from scoring."

'I am improving'

Sviatchenko believes he has already proved wrong the Danish critics who questioned his move to the Scottish champions.

"I believe I have shown what I am capable of," he said. "My goal was to be selected for the national squad when the new coach came in and, at this stage, I am here.

"I can feel I am improving in the Scottish league as well and I'm at a club with the culture of winning. I want to win as well, so at this stage I am satisfied."

Denmark coach Age Hareide was happy to see Sviatchenko join Celtic shortly after his own appointment in December.

Denmark wary of Scots at Hampden

"He is very pleased to be at Celtic and playing in an atmosphere like that will help his career," Hareide said.

"He's coming into the best team in Scotland and he will be better for playing in this league.

"I was happy. He is playing in an atmosphere with pressure and Celtic want to be the best. That suits him well."

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