Next two World Cup qualifiers could be decisive, says Scotland's Martin

Russell Martin
Russell Martin hopes Scotland can build momentum over their next two qualifiers
World Cup Qualifying Group F: Lithuania v Scotland
Venue: LFF Stadium, Vilnius Date: Friday, 1 September Kick-off: 19:45 BST
Coverage: Listen on BBC Radio Scotland, live text coverage on BBC Sport website

Russell Martin says the upcoming fixtures in World Cup qualifying Group F could "vastly" transform Scotland's hopes of reaching the World Cup finals.

The Scots visit Lithuania on Friday, when Slovakia welcome Slovenia.

Malta then visit Hampden in Scotland's Monday fixture while Slovakia are away to England and Slovenia host Lithuania.

"We've got a game on Friday that really, if we get the result we want, sets us up nicely for the last three," Norwich City defender Martin said.

"If you look at the other fixtures in the group, come the end of these two games, the group table could look hugely different; vastly different to what it is now, setting us up to two final games.

"But we have to go and make sure we do our job and not worry about all of that.

"If we do go and get the results that we want over these two games, you could be going into the last two games with the group looking much more favourable for us, so that's the aim coming out of these two games."

Gordon Strachan's Scotland trail third-placed Slovenia by three points after six games, while Slovakia are a point ahead of Slovenia and two behind leaders England.

In Scotland's final double-header next month, Slovakia come to Hampden then Slovenia host Strachan's men.

Lithuania, who drew with Scotland in Glasgow last year, are three points behind the Scots and five points clear of pointless Malta.

"We're going to go there on Friday and we're going to try to win the game," Martin said.

"We've never gone to play for a draw or to avoid getting beat heavily.

"If we get the result, it'll set us up nicely for a home game on Monday against Malta.

"We'll hopefully be going into that off the back of victory and everyone's feeling positive and we can get another good result."

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