Scots duo back Burley
Steven Whittaker and Shaun Maloney have jumped to the defence of under-fire Scotland coach George Burley.
Last Updated: 14/08/09 10:05pm
Steven Whittaker and Shaun Maloney have jumped to the defence of George Burley, insisting the Scotland coach should remain in his job.
There have been calls for Burley to be removed from his position following Scotland's 4-0 defeat in Norway left the national team's World Cup hopes hanging by a thread.
The Scots must beat Macedonia and Holland at home to have any chance of claiming a play-off spot, with the Scottish Football Association adamant no decision on Burley's future will be made until after the qualifying campaign is over.
Whittaker believes criticism of Burley in the wake of the Norway hammering has been unfair and wants the ex-Hearts boss to be given the chance to finish the job.
Blown out of proportion
"I think it's been blown out of proportion," said the Rangers full-back, who was a late substitute against Norway.
"We suffered a heavy defeat, but we played the majority of the game with 10 men and it's always hard to recover from that.
"We have two home games to come and we will focus on the job at hand."
Asked whether Burley should be given time to finish the job he started, Whittaker replied: "Without a doubt.
"We believe we can get two positive results and we need to go into those games believing and hopefully we will do that."
Maloney, who was left on the bench in Oslo, has echoed Whittaker's support for Burley and believes some of the criticism has been of a personal nature.
The Celtic forward said: "There has been a couple of things on the back of the papers which have been unfair, it's maybe been a little bit personal.
"I don't think it's about his time (in the job), he's obviously been in the job for quite a while.
"But some of the things that have been written and some of the things that you do see on the back of the papers have been unfair.
"Unfortunately, that's just the nature of the game and something that you have to put up with.
"The result was disappointing and yes, we have to win our last two games now and we will see how that goes."