Slovakia must solve striking problem to beat Scots - Lubo Moravcik

Robert Mak
Robert Mak has struggled to give Slovakia a cutting edge in attack

Former Celtic and Slovakia midfielder Lubo Moravcik believes his national side must solve problems up front if they are to beat Scotland on Tuesday.

Jan Kozak's team have not scored in their two opening defeats in World Cup qualifying Group F.

Zenit Saint Petersburg's Robert Mak played up front in Saturday's 1-0 loss away to Slovenia.

"I don't know who, but we need a striker up front because Mak is not a striker, he's a winger," said Moravcik.

"We have had a long-term problem with the strikers. We don't really have a top striker.

"Marek Hamsik for us is a key player and, if he is not on top form, it starts to be difficult for us.

"Hamsik is good when there is a striker who can keep the ball in front of him."

Michal Duris and Mark Bakos, who both play for Czech champions Viktoria Plzen, and Adam Nemec, who plays in the Romanian top flight with Dinamo Bucuresti, are the other striking options available to coach Kozak.

Moravcik believes that the return from suspension of Fenerbahce centre-half Martin Skrtel will allow Slovakia to return to a more normal style than the one adopted in Slovenia.

"Defence is our strong point, but without Skrtel, the captain, we played with three back, which for me wasn't a good choice because we played really deep and didn't push up and put Slovenia under pressure," the 51-year-old told BBC Scotland.

Lubo Moravcik
Moravcik won two league titles with Celtic

"Now that Skrtel is back, I think we will play a back four, with maybe one striker.

"We have to be much better up front because Scotland are a strong team with players playing in England and Celtic players like (Leigh) Griffiths up front."

Kozak has suggested that Slovakia must beat the Scots to retain a chance of finishing as runners-up and retaining hopes of reaching the finals via a play-off.

Moravcik agrees that his side are in a perilous position.

"The first game against England was a hard game for us," he said.

"England didn't play well in the game, but unfortunately, we conceded a goal in the last second of the game.

"One-zero was a bad beginning, but it was England and they are the favourites.

"The worst surprise was against Slovenia because we didn't play well.

"We made only one chance to score a goal, which is very poor against Slovenia because Slovenia are not a very strong team in Europe.

"And I think now we have got to win against Scotland because it is going to be very hard after that.

"For Slovakia, it is a crucial moment. We need to be very good on Tuesday to beat Scotland."

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